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Detroit Receiving Hospital gets state OK to fix fire, water damage

The Detroit News

Correction: This story and headline have been updated to reflect that the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services approved plans by Detroit Receiving Hospital to repair operating rooms damaged by fire and water and move trauma operations to another floor. A previous version misreported what the state approved.

Detroit Receiving Hospital has received state approval to move operations for trauma patients to a burn center room and make repairs after a fire and sprinkler flooding damaged eight operating rooms last weekend.

The blaze was in a single unoccupied operating room on Saturday, Brian Taylor, a spokesman for the Detroit Medical Center, said in an email.

"Fortunately, no patients were in surgery in any OR," he wrote. "Our staff responded quickly, and the fire was extinguished in minutes. Three patients in pre and post-op areas were safely evacuated. We are working collaboratively with (state officials) to address the area impacted."

Detroit Receiving Hospital is one of the facilities in the Detroit Medical Center group.

According to an emergency certificate-of-need request filed this week with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, repairs at Detroit Receiving Hospital will cost $100,000 because of "water damage and flooding to the hospital's operating room suite caused by a sprinkler leak that turned into the water flooding all eight of the existing operating rooms within this suite located on the second floor of this hospital."

The filing said "none of the operating rooms are fit for any type of patient surgery as the water has polluted the sterile area and is deemed unfit at this time for patient surgical use. All schedule(d) patients have been diverted over to Harper University Hospital for their surgeries."

The emergency request called for using a fourth-floor burn center procedure room to "allow any trauma patient with a life threatening injury to be operated on within Detroit Receiving Hospital and not (transferred) to another hospital as most trauma patients have life threatening injuries. A transfer of a trauma patient to another hospital is extremely dangerous to any trauma patient."

The request was approved Thursday, said Lynn Sutfin, a representative for the state health department.