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Crews Clean Up Chemical Spill In Basement Pharmacy Of Good Samaritan Hospital

Karyn Czar

Crews are investigating a chemical spill inside UK's Good Samaritan Hospital.   UK Healthcare Administrator JJ Housley tells WUKY’s Karyn Czar that firefighters were called out to the hospital on South Limestone around 5 this morning.

"There was a chemical spill that was reported in the inpatient pharmacy," Housley said.  "It turned out to be phenol which is an antiseptic used in operating rooms sometimes, also used to compound medications in the pharmacy.  So that was spilled and there was a response by the staff to clean it up and so some folks were impacted by the cleaning up of that substance," Housley told WUKY.

Housley was then asked to elaborate on how they were impacted:

"So just by handling the substance, cleaning it up, they were breathing in fumes of the substance and so the folks (who) came to clean up the spill, quickly realized they needed more expertise, called the fire department and they helped with the clean up."

Phenol is common in hospitals, it’s both corrosive and toxic.

Four people have been decontaminated after the spill. Emergency officials say around a dozen people are being observed.

The emergency room is closed, and the HVAC system in the hospital has been shut down.

No patients were evacuated.

Karyn Czar joined the WUKY News team July 1, 2013, but she's no stranger to radio.