Cancer clinics, infusions, radiology and phlebotomy services are expected to resume today as parts of the University of Michigan Health System re-open after a water line break forced certain departments in the Cancer Center to close on Tuesday.
While cleanup and accommodations were made to minimize damage within 24 hours of the leak, the cause of the flooding has not been determined and will not be for at least another week, UMHS spokeswoman Kara Gavin said.
“Everything is almost back to normal,” Gavin said. “Sharing information and deciding quickly what to do really helped get this cleaned up and get things up and running again.”
Gavin said the University Hospital is well prepared for unforeseen circumstances that require relocating patients, and that decisions on further displacements will be faculty-based.
“The respiratory therapists’ area still needs some cleanup, but that doesn’t affect patients or where they’re located,” Gavin said.
Level B2 of the University’s Comprehensive Cancer Center, the clinics and infusion areas are scheduled to open today. Patients were moved temporarily to the new C.S. Mott Children’s and Von Voigtlander Women’s Hospital.
Areas of the Cancer Center that suffered more severe flooding, like the east end of Level B1, will remain closed until at least the end of this week, according to an UMHS press release.
Yesterday, as workers tried to cease the flow of the water and begin cleanup yesterday, UMHS staff rescheduled appointments for chemotherapy infusion therapy at the Cancer Center, according to the release. Some infusions were also relocated to the Mott Children’s Hospital.
The evacuation of the cancer center on Tuesday was also carried out with little impact to patients, according to the release. The center continued “high-priority care” with the use of emergency power.
Max S. Wicha, director of the cancer center, expressed gratitude for efficient cooperation and swift responses to the water line break in the release.
“We want to thank and recognize doctors and staff who came together to assist during this situation,” Wicha said in the release.
Wicha added that the cooperation between the faculty and staff allowed the University to maintain a high level of patient care.
“We have dozens of physicians and staff working to ensure that our patients receive the best care with as little inconvenience as possible. Everyone is pitching in,” he said in the release.
Marcy Waldinger, chief administrative officer at the Cancer Center, also thanked the University’s faculty and staff of the accommodating buildings in the release.
“We are also fortunate that we could use space at the new children’s and women’s hospital,” Waldinger said. “We’re grateful for the staff there for accommodating additional patients.”