Saturday, 23 February, 2019

Hospital Evacuated After Tuberculosis Sample Accidentally Released

Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore evacuated due to possible TB exposureMore Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore evacuated due to possible TB exposureMore
Melissa Porter | 08 July, 2018, 10:26

Scientists studying the world's deadliest diseases got more than they bargained for yesterday when a sample of tuberculosis was accidentally dropped in a closed sky bridge at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Willis said while this was a one-time event, a review of procedures will take place.

This afternoon, the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland reported that a small amount of the infectious germ was potentially released in its facilities while being transported. Officials did not say how it might have been released.

A statement from the hospital said the bacteria, used primarily for medical research, may have been inadvertently released while in transit. The hospital has verified that they turned off the ventilation system within the hospital immediately after the reported spill because tuberculosis is an airborne bacterial disease that can infect the respiratory system.

But hospital authorities later said that there was "zero risk" to patients and hospital personnel and that testing would not occur.

Officials from the Baltimore City Department of Health also are reportedly on the scene.

"We have determined there is no risk involved". The bacteria affect the lungs, which can lead to chest pain, fatigue, fever, prolonged coughing or coughing up blood, night sweats, and loss of appetite. Because of its knack for picking on the immunocompromised, TB is much more risky and occasionally fatal for people who also have HIV.

"Tuberculosis (TB) is caused by a bacterium called Mycobacterium tuberculosis". It has always been on the decline in the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there were 9,272 U.S. cases in 2016. Tuberculosis is treatable but there are strains of the disease that have become resistant to antibiotics, which makes treatment long and expensive.