Mold Discovered in Doctor’s Office

HONESDALE, Pa. -- A doctor's office for pregnant women in Wayne County recently discovered mold in its waiting room, leading to concerns from patients and employees.

That black mold was discovered at the end of June at Women's Health Center.

Wayne Memorial Community Health Centers, which operates the office, says no one was ever exposed to the mold, and it's being cleaned up.

It's still a bit unsettling for mothers-to-be and workers there.

Signs at Women's Health Center in Honesdale let patients know their appointments are upstairs for the time being. Once you go downstairs, you can see why. The waiting room has been gutted.

"There was some water damage in the waiting room, and we noticed an odor," said Kara Poremba, Women's Health Center.

After the discovery, the practice remained open, but patients were moved upstairs.

"There was no exposure to patients or staff. We quarantined the area before any mold was disturbed," Poremba said.

"It is concerning to me. I bring him here. That's a major issue, and I'm pregnant. I'm seven weeks," said expectant mother Jessica Rieger.

Rieger only just started seeing health care providers at Women's Health but hopes the situation is safe for her, her son, and a new one on the way.

"It just seemed a little more dingy than upstairs. That's the only thing."

According to officials with WMCHC, the problem was back at end of June when a blocked rain gutter led to water in the basement. That led to the discovery of black mold.

Employees who didn't want to go on camera say the issues go back way before then.

"We have not identified any employee illnesses," said Fred Jackson, who oversees the health centers for Wayne Memorial.

Jackson admits there was even a time when it took longer than a week to take care of a dead rodent in the wall here. This time, Jackson insists the building will be safe for workers and patients.

"The environment is clean since July 2, waiting for contractors to come in and rebuild the space," Jackson said.

Health center officials say air quality tests still need to be done to be sure all the mold is removed.

Some black mold which can cause health problems if inhaled was also found in two offices but no patient rooms.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has opened an investigation into the mold at the health center.

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