Sewage backup halts surgery

A sewage backup temporarily shut down two surgical units at Victoria General Hospital on Wednesday.

Sewage flowed into two of 10 operating rooms used for elective surgeries, and one empty patient room.

That resulted in all elective surgeries being placed on hold for two hours until the situation was investigated and controlled, said Island Health spokeswoman Cheryl Bloxham.

The affected rooms were being thoroughly cleaned and sanitized. They are scheduled back in service today.

Two surgeries had to be rescheduled while the rest were carried out in available operating rooms, Bloxham said.

No equipment was damaged and the incident is being characterized as minimal. Bloxham did not know what caused the backup.

On July 10, 2018, a major flood at Victoria General Hospital forced the Island's trauma centre to divert 12 surgeries to Royal Jubilee Hospital.

At the time, a spokesman said that despite routine maintenance, Victoria General Hospital was a 35-year-old building with 35-year-old plumbing and something undetected can be expected to give now and then.

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