Updated Febrary 20, 2015
The safety of our patients is of our utmost concern.
You may have heard of an unfortunate outbreak of carbapenem resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) bacteria that occurred at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center during complex endoscopic procedures that took place between October 2014 and January 2015.
We want to assure you that it is safe to receive care at UCLA.
If you have any concerns, please contact your doctor or call UCLA Clinical Epidemiology and Infection Prevention at 310-794-0189.
Read CRE Frequently Asked Questions
Updated Febrary 19, 2015 at 2:30 pm PT The UCLA Health System notified 179 patients on Feb. 18 that they may have been exposed last fall to the carbapenem-resistant enterobacteriaceae (CRE) bacteria during an endoscopic procedure to diagnose and treat diseases of the liver, bile ducts and pancreas at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. A total of seven patients were infected; the infection was a contributing factor in the death of two patients. Only patients who underwent these endoscopic procedures from October 3 to January 28 are at risk of infection. Those patients are being offered a free home testing kit for analysis at UCLA to determine if they carry the bacteria in their intestines. UCLA followed both national guidelines and the sterilization standards stipulated by Olympus Medical Systems Group, the instrument’s manufacturer. However, an internal investigation determined in late January that CRE may have been transmitted by two of the seven Olympus scopes used by the hospital during the four-month period. UCLA immediately began reviewing every patient record to determine which patients underwent the procedure using this type of scope between October and January. In an abundance of caution, the hospital has notified all 179 patients who were examined with one of the seven instruments during that time. The two infected scopes were immediately removed from use for return to Olympus. UCLA currently performs a more stringent decontamination process that exceeds both the manufacturer’s standards and national guidelines. Hospital staff thoroughly clean the instrument and place it in an automated machine for disinfection. Then the instrument is sent off-site for a second sterilization process using a gas called ethylene oxide. The Los Angeles County Department of Health and California Department of Public Health were notified as soon as the outbreak was detected. CRE exposures using the same type of scope have been reported in other U.S. hospitals. Concerned patients may contact their primary care physician or UCLA’s clinical epidemiology and infection prevention department at 310-794-0189.
Patient hotline: 310-794-0189
Updated February 18, 2015
The UCLA Health System has notified more than 100 patients that they may have been infected by a “superbug” bacteria during complex endoscopic procedures that took place between October 2014 and January 2015. The patients are being offered free home testing kits that would be analyzed at UCLA.
UCLA sterilized the scopes according to the standards stipulated by the manufacturer. However, an internal investigation determined that carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) bacteria may have been transmitted during a procedure that uses this specialized scope to diagnose and treat pancreaticobiliary diseases and may have been a contributing factor in the death of two patients. A total of seven patients were infected.
Similar CRE exposures using the same type of scope recently have been reported in other hospitals in the United States. The two scopes involved with the infection were immediately removed and UCLA is now utilizing a decontamination process that goes above and beyond manufacturer and national standards. Both the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services and the California Department of Public Health were notified as soon as the bacteria were detected.