Patient safety at Cochran, other VA hospitals, to be the subject of a Congressional hearing

Apr 27, 2011

The U.S. House of Representatives has plans to take a look at patient safety lapses at the John Cochran VAMC in north St. Louis.

Rep. Russ Carnahan, a Democrat, pushed for the hearings after two separate problems with sterilization at Cochran.

The first, at its dental clinic in June 2010, led more than a thousand veterans to get tested for HIV, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C. (Four veterans tested positive, but there was no indication that the clinic led to the illnesses.)

And in February, the hospital shut down its surgical unit for more than a month after it found spots on instruments.

The hearings in front of the House Veterans Affairs Committee are supposed to review the response of the VA to the problems at Cochran and the hospital in Dayton, OH. A Senate committee traveled to Dayton yesterday for a hearing at the hospital there.