Duke University Health System has settled claims by patients who alleged they suffered health problems after being exposed to hydraulic fluid on surgical instruments at two Duke hospitals in 2004. According to media reports, the confidential settlement resolved claims against Duke by an unknown number of clients. There have been lawsuits filed by dozens of patients who were exposed to the hydraulic fluid at Durham Regional and Duke Raleigh hospitals. They have sued the companies that contracted with Duke to sterilize the equipment. The Plaintiffs were patients of the hospitals in late 2004, when more than 3,600 patients were operated on with instruments mistakenly cleaned with used hydraulic fluid. The fluid had been drained from an elevator and sent back to the hospitals for use as detergent. One would certainly never expect that something like this would happen, but apparently it did.
Source: Associated Press and Raleigh News & Observer
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