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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Officials say they may have to reconstruct the entire ventilation system that heats, cools and filters the air in the operating rooms at the Department of Veterans Affairs hospital in Columbia.



Dorn VA officials say they have no idea when the operating rooms might reopen.



Authorities closed the operating rooms in early October after finding dust on equipment caused by a disintegrating filter. The rooms were thoroughly cleaned and remained closed for weeks.



The operating rooms were opened again in late November, but closed four days later after more dust was found.



Officials say dust appears to have settled deep into the ducts where they cannot be cleaned.



The VA says surgeries for its patients are being performed at other facilities across Columbia.


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