Word of a cockroach infestation at a hospital is already creepy news, but in the cafeteria? That’s certainly enough to make one want to put off eating for awhile. One can only imagine how doctors, staff members, visitors, and even some patients felt when it was learned that St. John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California, had a bug problem in its cafeteria.
According to CBS Los Angeles, the hospital confirmed that Los Angeles County health inspectors determined that there was a cockroach infestation. Inspectors said they found at least ten live cockroaches running around in the cafeteria’s kitchen area. This nasty infestation caused the hospital to close the cafeteria down earlier this week. It’s believed that the cockroach problem will be dealt with by Saturday, at which time officials anticipate the section will be reopened.
The Los Angeles Times said that visitors wanting a bug-free bite to eat are being directed to restaurants in the surrounding area for the time being. Staff members who can’t go out to eat are having food brought into the hospital for them.
It’s an unfortunate problem for sure — but what exactly caused it in the first place?
— NBC Los Angeles (@NBCLA) October 23, 2015
Officials at the famous Santa Monica hospital have blamed the presence of cockroaches on something completely outside their control: the weather. CBS Los Angeles reported that a St. Johns Health Center spokeswoman claimed the bug issue was likely due to the hot weather, which “enticed” the cockroaches to go inside.
The Los Angeles Times noted that the hospital’s cafeteria is on the second floor of the hospital. That means these cockroaches had to do quite a bit of climbing to beat the heat and make it to “foodie paradise.” For anyone wondering if this revelation means there are bugs elsewhere at St John’s, that doesn’t seem to be the case. Reports indicate that the cockroach infestation was limited to the cafeteria’s kitchen.
As for relatives of patients at the hospital, they need not worry about the food being served in hospital rooms. The patient food is reportedly prepared “in an entirely different area of the hospital,” an area that inspectors apparently gave the all-clear. Still, it’s likely patients who made their way down to the cafeteria before the cockroach discovery are feeling a little bugged about it.
All jokes aside, it doesn’t appear that anyone was directly affected by this cockroach infestation in terms of their overall health. As previously stated, it’s expected the bug problem will be dealt with before the end of the weekend.
The St. John’s Health Center issued a statement through its spokeswoman about the embarrassing situation.
“Providence St. John’s apologizes for the inconvenience to our visitors, physicians, and staff, and while it’s difficult to control these natural occurrences, [St. John’s] pledges continued diligence in ensuring cleanliness and safety.”
Despite assurances, you can imagine that not everyone will be in a rush to return to the cafeteria when it reopens. Some are upset that it took this long for someone to spot the cockroach problem.
“I’m shocked,” Shalini Verma, a patient at St. John’s Health Center told CBS Los Angeles. “I’m really shocked and it’s absolutely unacceptable.” Hospital visitor Catherine Wright agreed. Wright said the bug problem was definitely “a bad thing,” one that “should have been seen.”
— FOX 11 Los Angeles (@myfoxla) October 23, 2015
The St. John’s Health Center in Santa Monica is a “fabled” location primarily due to all the celebrities that have gone to the hospital for treatment. Famous visitors include (but are not limited to): Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor, and Ronald Reagan.
What do you think about the hospital cockroach infestation problem? Do you agree with patients that the hospital took way too long in figuring out there was an issue? Please share your thoughts below!
[Image via Google Maps Screengrab]