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Pittsburgh mold deaths: hospital malpractice or product problem?

When people check into a hospital, they generally expect that all measures will be taken to care for them and try to get them well. They certainly do not expect to contract a fungal infection that may ultimately kill them. Unfortunately, that has what has happened in several Pittsburgh hospitals over the last few years. Now, there is a question as to whether the hospital or a linen company is responsible.

Since October of 2014, six people have died in two area hospitals, allegedly due to a fungal infection that has been traced to linens used in those facilities. The most recent was a Leukemia patient, who died last October. Reportedly, this death occurred several months after the hospital administration was advised about the fungal growth that had been found by an independent research company. The deceased had all been infected with a form of fungi known as rhizopus.

The company that provides the linens has denied that its products were the cause of the infections, even though the mold growth was found in one of its laundry facilities. According to the company, rhizopus infections happen more often at facilities that treat individuals who are sick and have compromised immune systems. Further, the linen company argues that it was the hospital's responsibility to ensure the linens given to their patients were sterile.

While the hospital has not commented on the matter, these cases could be a problem for them. They point to hospital malpractice. Hospitals should be a place of safety for people that are ill, and now, there are six patients who may have died wrongfully. Pittsburgh residents who have been hurt or died at a hospital due to a mistake made there by staff may be able to recover compensation.

Source: Legal Reader, "Mold Growth In Hospital Linens Linked To Six Deaths," Sarah E. Teller, Feb. 20, 2017

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