Baystate: Risk to patients possibly exposed to unclean colonoscope extremely low

Baystate Health is offering precautionary testing for patients

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Baystate Medical Center in Springfield notified 49 patients that they may have been exposed to an unclean surgical instrument.

Baystate Spokesman Keith O’Connor wouldn’t talk to 22News on camera about their cleaning procedures, but in a statement he said the potential contamination was to a colonoscope.

49 patients informed about potentially unclean surgical device at Baystate Medical Center

It’s a flexible tube with a camera inserted during colonoscopies, however, the hospital said this incident only affected people who had bowel surgery.

22News talked to one man who’s going in for a colonoscopy at Baystate Medical Center on Monday.

“As I mentioned, I’m going in on Monday for one and it’s pretty unnerving,” Steve Larrow said. “It’s the last thing that you expect to hear from a place like Baystate.”

Baystate says the risk to patients is extremely low. They’re offering precautionary testing and have established a phone line for people with questions.

Two years ago this month, it was discovered that nearly 300 patients could have possibly been exposed to HIV or hepatitis after getting a colonoscopy at Baystate Noble in Westfield.

293 at risk of exposure to HIV, Hepatitis through colonoscopies