Dingell Statement on Ongoing Surgery Cancellations at Ann Arbor VA
Ann Arbor, MI, May 20, 2016
U.S. Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (MI-12) released the following statement after being alerted that surgeries at the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System continue to be canceled or moved to different facilities because particulate matter has been observed on sterile surgical equipment. In November, Dingell wrote a letter to then-Director Robert P. McDivitt following similar reports. When surgeries resumed, she and Congressman Tim Walberg (MI-07) again wrote the VA seeking assurances that surgeries were not being conducted in unsafe conditions.
“I was deeply disturbed to learn there continue to be contamination issues at the Ann Arbor VA Hospital. The administration has been bringing in experts to seek solutions but it remains unacceptable that this problem continues to persist and that they still do not have answers about the source of the particulate matter that is appearing on surgical equipment. We have a responsibility to ensure they have the resources they need to identify the source of the problem so they can fix it.
“This is an unacceptable problem for any hospital to have, but we are advocates for our veterans and need to be their voice. We owe our veterans quality health care, and I am committed to this challenge. This issue cannot wait. I have spoken with the Director of the hospital, and Congressman Walberg and I will meet with him in the next couple of days to discuss what needs to be done. We need to understand who is being impacted, how often it is occurring, what experts have been brought in, and any additional steps that must be taken.”