Swedish Medical Center advises HIV tests after finding improperly sterilized equipment

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SEATTLE — A hospital is advising 27 patients to undergo HIV and hepatitis testing after finding that some equipment was not properly sterilized.

Swedish Medical Center believes the risk of infection is extremely low. Swedish spokesman Clay Holtzman says staff members followed three of four sterilization steps with the equipment used in prostate procedures.

Holtzman said Swedish discovered earlier this month that staff at the First Hill hospital campus hadn’t been doing the fourth step, which involves dousing the equipment in a sterilizing fluid. The errors occurred Sept. 19 and Dec. 10. The hospital notified patients Friday and is providing free tests.

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