Ted Lieu calls for congressional hearing about UCLA “superbug”

February 24, 2015
In The News

Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, called Monday for a congressional hearing on the potentially deadly “superbug” outbreaks that have been linked to contaminated medical scopes and caused at least seven infections, and two deaths, at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.

At UCLA, health officials have notified 179 patients who underwent endoscopic procedures using duodenoscopes at the hospital between October and January that they may have been exposed to the bacteria known as CRE.

“Addressing the problems posed by duodenoscope-linked superbug outbreaks is one step forward in combating the health and national security threats posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria,” Lieu wrote in a letter to leaders of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, on which he serves.

Lieu said outbreaks linked to the scopes have occurred in recent years in Pennsylvania, Illinois, North Carolina and Washington state. Two people recently died in North Carolina due to CRE, including an 88-year-old woman who died Friday.