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1 The Honorable Ken Schubert

7
SUPERIOR COURT OF WASHINGTON IN AND FOR KING COUNTY
8
SEATTLE CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL,
9 a Washington nonprofit corporation,
10 No. 19-2-26296-6 SEA
Plaintiff,
11 AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR
v. DECLARATORY JUDGMENT AND
12 INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING
KING COUNTY, a Washington municipal RELEASE OF PUBLIC RECORDS
13 corporation; WASHINGTON STATE
14 DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH; and KING
BROADCASTING COMPANY and its
15 affiliates, d/b/a KING 5, a Washington
corporation,
16
Defendants.
17

18
Plaintiff, Seattle Children’s Hospital, by and through its attorneys, Foster Garvey PC,
19
alleges as follows:
20
I. INTRODUCTION
21
1. Seattle Children’s Hospital (“Children’s”) brings this declaratory judgment and
22
injunctive relief action to prevent confidential and sensitive information that is protected from
23
disclosure by state and federal law from being released by King County, through its Department
24
of Public Health – Seattle & King County, and by the Washington State Department of Health, in
25
response to requests for public records made pursuant to Washington’s Public Records Act,
26

AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOSTER GARVEY PC 


AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING RELEASE OF 1111 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 3000
PUBLIC RECORDS - 1 SEATTLE, WASHINGTON 98101-3292
PHONE (206) 447-4400 FAX (206) 447-9700
1 ch. 42.56 RCW (“PRA”). The information at issue includes protected health information of

2 minor patients of Children’s and information and documents that are exempt from public

3 disclosure under RCW 42.56.360(1)(c) and related statutes. This information is exempt from

4 disclosure under the PRA, and its release would substantially and irreparably damage Children’s

5 and its patients, and is clearly not in the public interest.

6 2. Since the filing of Children’s original Complaint, King County continues to

7 process the PRA requests it previously received from four requesters, and it has received related

8 requests for records from additional requesters. All of the records requests substantially overlap

9 in substance (i.e., concerning Children’s and Aspergillus), and King County is responding to all

10 of the pending requests with productions of the same records to each requester. These requesters

11 are aware of these pending legal proceedings from notifications made by Children’s and by King

12 County. Children’s Amended Complaint does not seek to add any additional requester

13 defendants at this time.

14 3. The Washington State Department of Health has also received PRA requests

15 related to Children’s and Aspergillus, including from defendant King Broadcasting Company,

16 which involve the same types of information and exemptions at issue in King County’s records,

17 and in some cases implicate the same, or substantially similar, records as those being considered

18 by the Court in this matter.

19 II. PARTIES

20 4. Plaintiff Children’s is a Washington nonprofit corporation.

21 5. Defendant King County is a county of the State of Washington under Title 36

22 RCW. Several of the PRA requests at issue in this case were submitted to an operating

23 department of King County, namely Public Health – Seattle & King County (“Public Health”).

24 6. Defendant Washington State Department of Health (“DOH”) is an agency of the

25 State of Washington. DOH has received PRA requests related to the same issues as the requests

26 made to Public Health, and largely from the same records requesters.

AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOSTER GARVEY PC 


AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING RELEASE OF 1111 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 3000
PUBLIC RECORDS - 2 SEATTLE, WASHINGTON 98101-3292
PHONE (206) 447-4400 FAX (206) 447-9700
1 7. King Broadcasting Company and its affiliates, d/b/a KING 5, a Washington

2 corporation (“KING 5”), has made PRA requests to Public Health and DOH for copies of the

3 records at issue and was named as a Defendant to this action at KING 5’s request as an interested

4 party.

5 III. JURISDICTION AND VENUE

6 8. This Court has subject matter jurisdiction over the claims asserted in this action

7 pursuant to RCW 2.08.010, RCW 7.40.010, and RCW 42.56.540.

8 9. This Court has jurisdiction over Defendants pursuant to RCW 2.08.010,

9 RCW 4.92.010, and RCW 42.56.540.

10 10. Venue is proper in this Court pursuant to RCW 36.01.050 and RCW 4.12.025;

11 pursuant to RCW 4.92.010 because the cause of action arose in King County; and pursuant to

12 RCW 42.56.540 because the public records at issue are maintained in King County. Venue is

13 proper in this Court with respect to the claims against DOH because the movant, Children’s,

14 resides in King County. RCW 42.56.540.

15 IV. FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS

16 11. In the summer of 2018 and in May of 2019, Children’s determined that some of

17 its patients had developed Aspergillus surgical site infections after having surgery at Children’s

18 main campus. In response, Children’s immediately initiated an investigation through its

19 Coordinated Quality Improvement Program and worked with outside experts to take appropriate

20 corrective measures. In May 2019, Children’s elected to close its operating rooms when it

21 determined that deficiencies in its air handler were likely contributing to air quality issues.

22 Closing the operating rooms allowed Children’s to physically access the air handling system in

23 order to thoroughly investigate the cause and implement several improvements and corrective

24 actions. As part of Children’s incident response, multiple of its Quality Improvement

25 Committees initiated investigations. This quality improvement work is still ongoing as

26 Children’s performs an institution-wide root cause analysis and related work.

AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOSTER GARVEY PC 


AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING RELEASE OF 1111 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 3000
PUBLIC RECORDS - 3 SEATTLE, WASHINGTON 98101-3292
PHONE (206) 447-4400 FAX (206) 447-9700
1 Children’s Coordinated Quality Improvement Program

2 12. State law requires every hospital to “maintain a coordinated quality improvement

3 program for the improvement of the quality of health care services rendered to patients and the

4 identification and prevention of medical malpractice.” RCW 70.41.200(1). As part of that

5 program, a hospital must establish “one or more quality improvement committees.”

6 RCW 70.41.200(1)(a). Consistent with these requirements, Children’s operates a Coordinated

7 Quality Improvement Program through various committees and subcommittees.

8 13. Dr. Danielle Zerr, MD, MPH, is a Professor of Pediatric Infectious Diseases at the

9 University of Washington and a practicing physician at Children’s. Dr. Zerr is a voting member

10 of Children’s Quality Improvement Steering Committee; a voting member of the Infection

11 Prevention Leadership Committee; and a voting member of the Infection Prevention Executive

12 Oversight Committee. Dr. Zerr corresponded with experts at Public Health, the Centers for

13 Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”), and DOH in her role as a member of these Children’s

14 quality improvement committees.

15 14. Dr. Zerr sought to protect the confidentiality of her communications by labeling

16 them as confidential and protected. For example, the subject line of her emails typically

17 included, “confidential and protected quality improvement information per RCW 4.24.250 and

18 70.41.200.” Dr. Zerr also typically included in the footer of her emails, “This is confidential and

19 protected quality improvement information per RCW 4.24.250 and 70.41.200. Please protect

20 this information and share it only with those who are directly involved in the Quality

21 Improvement process.”

22 15. In July 2019, to validate that its operating rooms were safe for patient care,

23 Children’s invited the CDC, DOH, and Public Health to tour Children’s facilities and assess

24 Children’s safety protocols. These agencies confirmed that Children’s had taken appropriate

25 actions to reduce the risk of future Aspergillus infections.

26

AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOSTER GARVEY PC 


AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING RELEASE OF 1111 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 3000
PUBLIC RECORDS - 4 SEATTLE, WASHINGTON 98101-3292
PHONE (206) 447-4400 FAX (206) 447-9700
1 Public Records Requests

2 16. Public Health has received multiple Public Records Act requests relating to the

3 Aspergillus issue. Copies of all pending PRA requests submitted to Public Health regarding

4 Children’s and Aspergillus of which Children’s is aware are attached as Exhibit A. It is

5 Children’s understanding that, due in particular to the overlapping nature of these requests,

6 Public Health is processing them simultaneously and producing the same records to each

7 requester.

8 17. On September 6, 2019, Children’s received written notice from Public Health that

9 Public Health had received PRA requests regarding Children’s. Public Health informed

10 Children’s that it would be releasing certain records relating to Children’s in response to the

11 PRA requests, absent a court order preventing release, and it provided copies of the records that

12 would be released. The records provided by Public Health include records protected from

13 disclosure under RCW 42.56.360(1)(c) and related statutes.

14 18. The records also contain specific details concerning minor patients of Children’s,

15 revealing protected health information (“PHI”) as defined by the Health Insurance Portability

16 and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Pub. L. 104–191; see also 45 C.F.R. Part 160 (implementing

17 regulations) and Washington’s Health Care Information Act, ch. 70.02 RCW.

18 19. Public Health advised Children’s that it would disclose the records at issue in

19 unredacted form in response to the PRA requests unless Children’s reached an agreement with

20 the requesters on the redactions or obtained an order from the court enjoining release of the

21 exempt information. Public Health has also advised, through counsel, that Public Health

22 believes Children’s is in the best position to demonstrate that the information at issue in this

23 lawsuit satisfies the criteria of the exemptions claimed.

24 20. Unable to reach an agreement with all of the requesters, Children’s filed its

25 original Complaint on October 7, 2019.

26

AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOSTER GARVEY PC 


AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING RELEASE OF 1111 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 3000
PUBLIC RECORDS - 5 SEATTLE, WASHINGTON 98101-3292
PHONE (206) 447-4400 FAX (206) 447-9700
1 21. Since the filing of Children’s original Complaint, Public Health has received

2 additional records requests that substantially overlap with the previously submitted requests.

3 Public Health has informed Children’s that it is in the process of reviewing thousands of records

4 for potential responsiveness to the requests and that there are seven requesters with a total of nine

5 open requests. See Exhibit A.

6 22. DOH has also received PRA requests regarding Children’s and Aspergillus. Two

7 of these requesters, including KING 5, submitted similar requests to Public Health. Children’s

8 also received notice of a third request submitted to DOH. Copies of all pending PRA requests

9 submitted to DOH regarding Children’s and Aspergillus of which Children’s is aware are

10 attached as Exhibit B.

11 23. DOH has informed Children’s that Children’s must immediately seek injunctive

12 relief or DOH will release the records requested, subject to those exemptions that DOH has

13 already identified it will apply to the requested records. Children’s must obtain court relief no

14 later than February 28, 2020, to prevent release of records in dispute.

15 V. CAUSES OF ACTION

16 Claim No. 1 – Declaratory Judgment Under Chapter 7.24 RCW

17 24. Children’s re-alleges and incorporates all of the previous allegations set forth in

18 this complaint.

19 25. Declaratory judgment is appropriate in this case because all of the elements set

20 forth in chapter 7.24 RCW are met: (1) there is an actual, present, and existing dispute;

21 (2) between parties having genuine and opposing interests; (3) which involves direct and

22 substantial interests; and (4) necessitates a judicial determination of which will be final and

23 conclusive. Children’s is entitled to prompt disposition of this matter under the PRA and the

24 Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act, chapter 7.24 RCW, as the release of this information will

25 do irreparable harm.

26

AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOSTER GARVEY PC 


AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING RELEASE OF 1111 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 3000
PUBLIC RECORDS - 6 SEATTLE, WASHINGTON 98101-3292
PHONE (206) 447-4400 FAX (206) 447-9700
1 26. Children’s believes that disclosing these records in an unredacted form, or in a

2 redacted form that is insufficient to protect exempt information, will create immediate and

3 substantial harm, and that it is necessary to clarify by judicial declaration that certain information

4 in the records is exempt from public disclosure under the PRA.

5 Claim No. 2 – Request For Injunctive Relief

6 27. Children’s re-alleges and incorporates all of the previous allegations set forth in
7 this complaint.
8 28. This Court has jurisdiction to enjoin the release of public records exempt from
9 public disclosure if their release “would clearly not be in the public interest and would
10 substantially and irreparably damage any person, or would substantially and irreparably damage
11 vital governmental functions.” RCW 42.56.540.
12 29. Public Health and DOH have received requests for the disclosure of records,
13 including correspondence with or concerning Children’s or its patients, which contain exempt
14 information and that Public Health and DOH will disclose in the absence of an order from this
15 Court enjoining release.
16 30. RCW 42.56.360(1)(c) exempts the following from public disclosure:
17 Information and documents created specifically for, and collected and maintained
by a quality improvement committee under RCW 43.70.510, 70.230.080, or
18
70.41.200, or by a peer review committee under RCW 4.24.250, or by a quality
19 assurance committee pursuant to RCW 74.42.640 or 18.20.390, or by a hospital,
as defined in RCW 43.70.056, for reporting of health care-associated infections
20 under RCW 43.70.056, a notification of an incident under RCW 70.56.040(5),
and reports regarding adverse events under RCW 70.56.020(2)(b), regardless of
21 which agency is in possession of the information and documents[.]
22
31. The PRA itself contains a number of exemptions, but records may also be
23
withheld or redacted under an “other statute which exempts or prohibits disclosure of specific
24
information or records,” including under state or federal law. RCW 42.56.070(1). The Health
25
Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Pub. L. 104–191, is an “other statute”
26

AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOSTER GARVEY PC 


AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING RELEASE OF 1111 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 3000
PUBLIC RECORDS - 7 SEATTLE, WASHINGTON 98101-3292
PHONE (206) 447-4400 FAX (206) 447-9700
1 prohibiting public disclosure of protected health information (PHI). See also 45 C.F.R.

2 § 160.103. In addition, Washington’s Health Care Information Act, chapter 70.02 RCW,

3 prohibits public disclosure of health care information of patients. See also RCW 42.56.360(2);

4 WAC 246-08-390.

5 32. Disclosure of the records at issue in unredacted form, or in a redacted form that is

6 insufficient to protect exempt information, is not in the public interest and would substantially

7 and irreparably damage Children’s, and the patients identified in the records, in a manner for

8 which there is no adequate remedy at law. Once disclosed, the records cannot be undisclosed.

9 Accordingly, Children’s has a clear legal and equitable right to protect the exempt information in

10 the records.

11 33. Pursuant to RCW 42.56.540, the Court should enter a permanent injunction

12 barring Public Health (King County) and DOH from disclosing the records to a public records

13 requester in any manner that reveals exempt information.

14 VI. PRAYER FOR RELIEF

15 Having set forth its complaint, Plaintiff Children’s respectfully requests that this Court

16 grant the following relief:

17 1. A declaratory judgment that the specified information in the records is exempt

18 from disclosure under the PRA’s exemptions established by RCW 42.56.360(1)(c),

19 RCW 42.56.070, HIPAA, and Washington’s Health Care Information Act (ch. 70.02 RCW),

20 and/or any other applicable exemption under state or federal law.

21 2. A declaratory judgment that King County (Public Health – Seattle & King

22 County) and DOH, as a matter of law, are prohibited from making available for public inspection

23 and copying the records in any manner that reveals exempt information;

24 3. A preliminary and permanent injunction under Chapter 7.40 RCW and

25 RCW 42.56.540, barring King County (Public Health – Seattle & King County) and DOH from

26

AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOSTER GARVEY PC 


AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING RELEASE OF 1111 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 3000
PUBLIC RECORDS - 8 SEATTLE, WASHINGTON 98101-3292
PHONE (206) 447-4400 FAX (206) 447-9700
1 disclosing the records to a public records requester in any manner that reveals exempt

2 information;

3 4. Leave to amend this pleading to conform to the proof later discovered during the

4 course of litigation or offered by any of the parties at trial; and

5 5. Such other and further relief as the Court deems just, equitable, or otherwise

6 proper.

7 DATED this 14th day of February, 2020.

8 FOSTER GARVEY PC
9
/s Adrian Urquhart Winder
10 Adrian Urquhart Winder, WSBA No. 38071
Andrea L. Bradford, WSBA No. 45748
11 1111 Third Avenue, Suite 3000
Seattle, Washington 98101-3292
12 T: (206) 447-4400 / F: (206) 447-9700
Email: adrian.winder@foster.com
13
andrea.bradford@foster.com
14
Attorneys for Plaintiff Seattle Children’s
15 Hospital
16

17

18

19

20

21

22

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24

25

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AMENDED COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOSTER GARVEY PC 


AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF REGARDING RELEASE OF 1111 THIRD AVENUE, SUITE 3000
PUBLIC RECORDS - 9 SEATTLE, WASHINGTON 98101-3292
PHONE (206) 447-4400 FAX (206) 447-9700
EXHIBIT A
From: Sheldon, Linzi (CMG-Seattle)
To: Disclosure, Public
Subject: KIRO-TV PDR to King County Public Health 7/3/2019
Date: Thursday, July 04, 2019 3:19:56 PM
Attachments: image001.png

[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.

To Whom It May Concern,

Under the Washington Public Records Act, §42.56 et seq., I am requesting an opportunity to inspect
or obtain copies of public records consisting of communication between Seattle Children’s hospital
and King County Public Health from Jan. 1st, 2018 up until the date this request is processed and
complete that include the keywords:
-fungus/fungi
And/or
-mold(s)
And/or
-aspergillus/aspergillosis
And/or
-air purification
I am defining communication as any correspondence between contractors and/or employees at
Seattle Children’s and King County Public Health, including but not limited to:
-emails
-text messages
-voicemails
-recorded Skype or Skype-like conversations
-documents

I request that these documents be provided in rolling installments as they become available.

If there are any fees for searching or copying these records, please inform me. However, I would also
like to request a waiver of all fees in that the disclosure of the requested information is in the public
interest and will contribute significantly to the public’s understanding of public health and funds
used to regulate. I am a representative of the news media: I am a reporter at KIRO-TV.

The Washington Public Records Act requires a response to this request be made within five business
days. If access to the records I am requesting will take longer than this amount of time, please
contact me with information about when I might expect copies or the ability to inspect the
requested records.

If you deny any or all of this request, please cite each specific exemption you feel justifies the refusal
to release the information and notify me of the appeal procedures available to me under the law.

Please feel free to contact me directly at this email or at my cell at 206-718-9663. Thank you for
considering my request.

Linzi Sheldon

Linzi Sheldon | Investigative Reporter & Weekend Anchor | KIRO 7


Cox Media Group | 2807 3rd Ave | Seattle, WA 98121
Desk: 206-728-8287 | Cell: 206-718-9663 | lsheldon@kiro7.com
Email: corrie@cjylaw.com

July 9, 2019

Via Email: public.dislosure@kingcounty.gov

Business Standards and Accountability Section


Public Health — Seattle & King County
401 5th Ave, Suite 900
Seattle, WA 98104

Re: Public Records Request


RCW 42056.010

Dear Sir or Madam:

We hereby request the following documents under RCW 42.56.010:

1. All communications (email, letters, transcribed phone messages) to or from Seattle


Childrens Hospital (“Childrens”) related to aspergillus contamination at the hospital in
2018 and/or 2019.
2. All communications (email, letters, transcribed phone messages) to or from Childrens
related to aspergillus contamination at the hospital prior to 2018.
3. All reports (draft and final) related to aspergillus contamination at Childrens, including
without limitation toxicology, mycology, and/or industrial hygiene reports.
4. Any and all records relating to any patient at Childrens allegedly exposed to aspergillus
mold at the hospital.
5. Any and all records relating to any patient at Childrens allegedly harmed because of
exposure to aspergillus mold at the hospital.
6. Any and all records relating to any investigation by you into the issue of mold
contamination at Seattle Childrens.
7. Any documents related to compliance or non-compliance by Childrens with CMS
requirements for air quality and/or air handlers and/or fungal contamination, including
without limitation a letter from CMS to Childrens sent on or around June 20, 2019
addressing “the air handlers serving the operating rooms.”
8. Any and all documents to or from the Centers for Disease Control regarding mold
contamination at Children’s, including without limitation a referral by you to CDC.

We agree to pay all fees associated with this request in compliance with RCW 42.56.130. Please
forward an invoice to the address below. Thank you in advance for your prompt attention to this
request.

Sincerely,

Corrie J. Yackulic

CJY/cjy
Executive Branch
Public Records Program

To our customers: A few words about requesting Property-Related Environmental Public Records

King County’s property-related environmental records are among the most often requested records of county
government. A table of the most often sought categories of environmental records appears below, with notations for
each. Rest assured that any requests made through the King County Executive Branch’s Public Records Program will be
coordinated among all King County Executive Branch departments and workgroups likely to have responsive records. A
single request through this program will be coordinated through the following workgroups as appropriate to ensure a
thorough and timely response. The request form is attached. There is no value in making individual requests to the
organizations listed immediately below, as they are included in the coordinated response. A coordinated request
typically takes 3 weeks to a month to complete. Please submit all requests to Public.Disclosure@KingCounty.gov

Public Health – Seattle and King County (PHSKC)


 Environmental Health Program
The Department of Natural Resource and Parks (DNRP)
 Stormwater Services Section (SWS)
 Industrial Waste Program (IW)
 Local Hazardous Waste Management Program (LHWMP)
 Brownfields Program
The Department of Permitting and Environmental Review (DPER)

Records Category Program(s) Information needed to search Notes (including potential records
sources)
Permitting DPER Address and/or parcel number City if within city limits
Hazardous Materials LHWMP, Address and/or business name, City if within city limits; Washington State
PHSKC, IW, and parcel number Department of Ecology
SWD, SWS
Environmental LHWMP, Address and/or business name, City if within city limits; Washington State
Enforcement Activities PHSKC, IW, and parcel number Department of Ecology. This category will
SWD not include pestilence records.
Brownfields Records SWD Address and/or business name,
and/or parcel number
Septic System Records PHSKC Address and parcel number
Records of Wells PHSKC System Name or State ID
Restaurant Inspections PHSKC Address and/or business name Database of inspection records is
available online:
http://info.kingcounty.gov/health/ehs/fo
odsafety/inspections/search.aspx
Underground Storage Tanks DPER Address and/or parcel number Washington State Department of Ecology
has more info available:
http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/tcp/us
t-lust/2011/06-other-info.html#Home-
heating
Solid Waste Records PHSKC Address and parcel number(s)
Executive Branch
Public Records Program

PUBLIC RECORDS ACT REQUEST FORM


Today’s Date: August 9, 2019

Name: Law Offices of James S. Rogers Phone No.: 206.621.8525


Mailing Address: 1500 Fourth Avenue, Suite 500 Fax No.:
206.223.8224
Seattle, WA 98101
Email Address: krysta@jsrogerslaw.com Org Name:
A. General Records Request
If you are seeking environmental and/or property records, please advance to Section B. For all other
requests, please specify the records that you are seeking. Clear, date-bound requests for records
(and not information generally) will facilitate an efficient response.
Public Health – Seattle and King County (PHSKC)
We are requesting any and all records related to PHSKC's knowledge of Seattle Children's Hospital and mold, including but
not limited to correspondence, reports, inspection records, third party records, photos, video, audio and diagrams.

B. Property-Related Environmental Records


Indicate the property or properties about which you are seeking records. To facilitate the most
thorough and timely possible search process, please include as many pieces of information as you
have in the spaces provided below: street address, parcel number and business name(s). Property
research databases are available on King County’s website at the following link:
http://kingcounty.gov/operations/GIS/PropResearch.aspx. From here you can search a property
address to find a corresponding parcel number or vice versa. We encourage you to take this extra
step to help us provide the most meaningful and timely response possible.

Property Address(es): 4800 Sand Point Way NE


Seattle, WA 98105
Parcel Number(s) 2982800005

Business Name(s) Seattle Children's

Indicate the category(ies) of records you are seeking for the above identified property or properties.
 Hazardous Materials*

 Brownfields  Wells**
 Septic System  Underground Storage Tank  Solid Waste
 Drainage and Water Quality  Restaurant Inspections  Permitting
 Environmental Enforcement  Other (pleasedescribe):

Activities* mold
* An adequate search can be conducted using only the property address.
**Well records require a system name or state ID.
All other categories require a parcel number.
Use the space below to provide any additional detail that might aid in a timely and complete
response to your request. You can also specify in this space provided other records
categories you are seeking:

You may make an appointment to inspect the responsive records free of charge. If you wish to obtain
copies, pursuant to RCW 42.56.070(8) and RCW 42.56.120, we charge $0.15 per page, plus the cost
of postage if the records are mailed to you.
From: Ingalls, Christopher
To: Disclosure, Public
Subject: Records Request from KING 5 News
Date: Thursday, August 22, 2019 11:33:22 AM
Attachments: image001.png
image002.png

[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.

Greetings,
This is a records request from KING 5. Please call reporter Chris Ingalls if there are any questions.
PUBLIC RECORDS REQUEST
Dear Public Disclosure Officer:
Pursuant to the state open records law, Wash. Rev. Code Secs. 42.56.001 to 42.56.904 I
request access to and an electronic copy of:
-Records since January 1, 2018 related to the presence of Aspergillus mold at Seattle
Children’s Hospital.
-Record in approximately late June/July in which Children’s Hospital first notified King Co.
Public Health about the outbreak
-a copy of the July 3, 2018 “Reactive Media Statement” prepared by Danielle Zerr
-all video, photographs, recordings related to the above cases
The statute requires public agencies to "provide for the fullest assistance to inquirers and
the most timely possible action on requests for information." (RCW 42.56.100) The statute
also provides that exemptions to disclosure generally are discretionary, and that the agency
cannot be held liable for good-faith release of public records. (RCW 42.56.060)
Accordingly, as a journalist working on a deadline, I request to receive these records as
soon as possible and as they become available, rather than waiting for the entire request to
be ready for inspection or disclosure. Please notify me by telephone (206-448-3980)or
email (cingalls@KING5.com) when records are available.
As provided by the open records law, I will expect your response within five (5) business
days. Please contact me if you have any questions or need clarification.
Thank you for your assistance.
Sincerely,
Chris Ingalls
News Reporter

cingalls@king5.com | P. 206-448-3980
Cell 206-604-0574
1501 First Avenue South, Suite 300
Seattle, WA 98134
From: Ingalls, Christopher
To: Disclosure, Public
Subject: #2 Records Request from KING 5
Date: Thursday, August 22, 2019 11:46:34 AM
Attachments: image001.png
image002.png

[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.

Hello –
Sorry! I just submitted a records request (see below) to KC public health, and forgot one element.
Can you please add this?
-all emails from since Jan. 1, 2018 to or from Dr. Meagan Kay regarding the presence of Aspergillus
at Seattle Children’s Hospital.
From: Ingalls, Christopher
Sent: Thursday, August 22, 2019 11:33 AM
To: public.disclosure@kingcounty.gov
Subject: Records Request from KING 5 News
Greetings,
This is a records request from KING 5. Please call reporter Chris Ingalls if there are any questions.
PUBLIC RECORDS REQUEST
Dear Public Disclosure Officer:
Pursuant to the state open records law, Wash. Rev. Code Secs. 42.56.001 to 42.56.904 I
request access to and an electronic copy of:
-Records since January 1, 2018 related to the presence of Aspergillus mold at Seattle
Children’s Hospital.
-Record in approximately late June/July in which Children’s Hospital first notified King Co.
Public Health about the outbreak
-a copy of the July 3, 2018 “Reactive Media Statement” prepared by Danielle Zerr
-all video, photographs, recordings related to the above cases
The statute requires public agencies to "provide for the fullest assistance to inquirers and
the most timely possible action on requests for information." (RCW 42.56.100) The statute
also provides that exemptions to disclosure generally are discretionary, and that the agency
cannot be held liable for good-faith release of public records. (RCW 42.56.060)
Accordingly, as a journalist working on a deadline, I request to receive these records as
soon as possible and as they become available, rather than waiting for the entire request to
be ready for inspection or disclosure. Please notify me by telephone (206-448-3980)or
email (cingalls@KING5.com) when records are available.
As provided by the open records law, I will expect your response within five (5) business
days. Please contact me if you have any questions or need clarification.
Thank you for your assistance.
Sincerely,
Chris Ingalls
News Reporter
cingalls@king5.com | P. 206-448-3980
Cell 206-604-0574
1501 First Avenue South, Suite 300
Seattle, WA 98134
From: David Gutman
To: Disclosure, Public
Subject: Public Records Request
Date: Tuesday, November 12, 2019 4:55:05 PM

[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.

David Gutman
The Seattle Times
1000 Denny Way
Seattle, WA 98107

Nov 12, 2019

Custodian of records
Public Health – Seattle & King County

Dear custodian of records:

Under the Washington Public Records Act, §42.56 et seq., I am requesting an opportunity to inspect
or obtain copies of public records showing documents provided to King 5 television regarding mold
or aspergillus at Seattle Children’s Hospital.

I am requesting copies of all documents provided to King 5 in response to public records requests
related to mold or aspergillus at Seattle Children’s Hospital since Jan. 1, 2018.

If there are any fees for searching or copying these records, please inform me if the cost will exceed
$10. However, I would also like to request a waiver of all fees in that the disclosure of the requested
information is in the public interest and will contribute significantly to the public’s understanding of
problems at Seattle Chilrden’s. This information is not being sought for commercial purposes.

The Washington Public Records Act requires a response to this request be made within five business
days. If access to the records I am requesting will take longer than this amount of time, please
contact me with information about when I might expect copies or the ability to inspect the
requested records. Since I am asking for copies of already fulfilled records requests, I am hopeful
that the process will be expeditious.

If you deny any or all of this request, please cite each specific exemption you feel justifies the refusal
to release the information and notify me of the appeal procedures available to me under the law.

Thank you for considering my request.

Sincerely,

David Gutman
206-464-2926

__________
David Gutman
The Seattle Times
Office: 206-464-2926
Cell: 802-338-1784
Twitter: @davidlgutman
From: Apa, James
To: Kipp, Julie; Disclosure, Public
Cc: Karasz, Hilary
Subject: FW: Dr. Duchin
Date: Friday, November 15, 2019 11:19:16 AM

Julie, here’s a new public disclosure request from Children’s.


Thanks,
James
From: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>
Sent: Friday, November 15, 2019 10:19 AM
To: Apa, James <James.Apa@kingcounty.gov>
Subject: RE: Dr. Duchin
[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.
Great. Here you go. Thanks, James.
I'm requesting any and all documentation, reports, notes and communications related to Public
Health - Seattle & King County's visit to Seattle Children's hospital on July 15 and 16, 2019.
I'm also requesting any documentation and communications between Public Health - Seattle &
King County, the state Department of Health and Seattle Children's hospital relating to DOH's
Aug. 7 visit of Children's.
Ryan Blethen
The Seattle Times
p: 206-464-2210
@RyanBlethen
From: Apa, James [mailto:James.Apa@kingcounty.gov]
Sent: Friday, November 15, 2019 10:10 AM
To: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>
Subject: RE: Dr. Duchin
An e-mail from you is fine.
From: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>
Sent: Friday, November 15, 2019 9:40 AM
To: Apa, James <James.Apa@kingcounty.gov>
Subject: RE: Dr. Duchin
[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.
I haven’t filed a request with Public Health. Will and email suffice or do I need to fill out the form for
King County public records?
Ryan Blethen
The Seattle Times
p: 206-464-2210
@RyanBlethen
From: Apa, James [mailto:James.Apa@kingcounty.gov]
Sent: Friday, November 15, 2019 9:16 AM
To: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>
Subject: Re: Dr. Duchin
OK, thanks. I can get the CDC report for you today, and if you want to write up a PDR for
anything else associated with that, I'm glad to forward it to our public disclosure office.
James

From: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>


Sent: Friday, November 15, 2019 9:12 AM
To: Apa, James <James.Apa@kingcounty.gov>
Subject: RE: Dr. Duchin
[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.
This does help. Thanks, James. I’ll put in a request for anything from the July 15-16 visit.
Ryan
Ryan Blethen
The Seattle Times
p: 206-464-2210
@RyanBlethen
From: Apa, James [mailto:James.Apa@kingcounty.gov]
Sent: Friday, November 15, 2019 9:00 AM
To: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>
Subject: Re: Dr. Duchin

Hi, Ryan. I confirmed that the August 7, 2019 visit to Children’s was from DOH Health Systems
Quality Assurance (the hospital regulator). We’re not involved with their investigations -- it’s done
independently from our work. I think it’s unlikely that we would have any documentation related to
that visit, since we weren’t involved and didn’t attend, but if you want to put in a public disclosure
request, we can send it to our public disclosure office to process and see if anything comes up.

Separate from that, we did do a site visit to Children’s on July 15-16, 2019 along with CDC (the
technical expert on this issue) and the state Department of Health’s Healthcare Associated Infections
team (which is separate from their Health Systems Quality Assurance team). Recommendations for
additional mitigation strategies to prevent recurrence of the issue were provided at the time, and
the CDC followed up with a report to Children's.

Hope this helps, and let me know if you have additional questions.

James

From: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>


Sent: Friday, November 15, 2019 8:43 AM
To: Apa, James <James.Apa@kingcounty.gov>
Subject: RE: Dr. Duchin
[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.
Good morning, James. I wanted to circle back and see if you had found out if PHSKC did an
inspection around the time DOH did it’s inspection on Aug. 7.
Thanks
Ryan
Ryan Blethen
The Seattle Times
p: 206-464-2210
@RyanBlethen
From: Apa, James [mailto:James.Apa@kingcounty.gov]
Sent: Thursday, November 14, 2019 7:00 PM
To: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>
Subject: Re: Dr. Duchin
Thanks. Once we can lock in a time, I'll send you a line to call into.

From: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>


Sent: Thursday, November 14, 2019 6:43 PM
To: Apa, James <James.Apa@kingcounty.gov>
Subject: Re: Dr. Duchin
[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.
I spoke with David and we can do tje interview together. Keep us posted and we will make it
work tomorrow.
Ryan
Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone
-------- Original message --------
From: "Apa, James" <James.Apa@kingcounty.gov>
Date: 11/14/19 6:18 PM (GMT-08:00)
To: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>
Subject: RE: Dr. Duchin
Thanks, Ryan. I just talked with him. Schedule in flux, as he’s back east for a funeral that’s taking
much of his day. He can be available tentatively at 3 p.m. Pacific. He’ll text me during the day with
updates and will let me know if he has to adjust the time.
I need to clarify with David Gutman if he wants to do the interviews together or separately. If
separate, we’ll go first with you, then David. I’ll let you know as it firms up.
James
From: Ryan Blethen <rblethen@seattletimes.com>
Sent: Thursday, November 14, 2019 5:48 PM
To: Apa, James <James.Apa@kingcounty.gov>
Subject: Dr. Duchin
[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.
Hi, James. Have you heard from Jeff? Be great if we can speak with him tomorrow for a
story we are working on for the weekend
Thanks
Ryan
Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone
From: Sheldon, Linzi (CMG-Seattle)
To: Disclosure, Public
Subject: KIRO-TV Records Request NEW 11/19/2019
Date: Tuesday, November 19, 2019 12:14:29 PM
Attachments: image001.png

[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.

To Whom It May Concern,

Under the Washington Public Records Act, §42.56 et seq., I am requesting an opportunity to inspect
or obtain copies of public records consisting of communication between Seattle Children’s hospital
and King County Public Health from July 15, 2019 up until the date this request is processed and
complete that include the keywords:
-fungus/fungi
And/or
-mold(s)
And/or
-aspergillus/aspergillosis
And/or
-air purification
I am defining communication as any correspondence between contractors and/or employees at
Seattle Children’s and King County Public Health, including but not limited to:
-emails
-text messages
-voicemails
-recorded Skype or Skype-like conversations
-documents

I request that these documents be provided in rolling installments as they become available.

If there are any fees for searching or copying these records, please inform me. However, I would also
like to request a waiver of all fees in that the disclosure of the requested information is in the public
interest and will contribute significantly to the public’s understanding of public health and funds
used to regulate. I am a representative of the news media: I am a reporter at KIRO-TV.

The Washington Public Records Act requires a response to this request be made within five business
days. If access to the records I am requesting will take longer than this amount of time, please
contact me with information about when I might expect copies or the ability to inspect the
requested records.

If you deny any or all of this request, please cite each specific exemption you feel justifies the refusal
to release the information and notify me of the appeal procedures available to me under the law.

Please feel free to contact me directly at this email or at my cell at 206-718-9663. Thank you for
considering my request.

Linzi Sheldon

Linzi Sheldon | Investigative Reporter & Weekend Anchor | KIRO 7


Cox Media Group | 2807 3rd Ave | Seattle, WA 98121
Desk: 206-728-8287 | Cell: 206-718-9663 | lsheldon@kiro7.com
cid:image001.png@01D54DE6.6F07D9E0

Linzi Sheldon | Investigative Reporter & Weekend Anchor | KIRO 7


Cox Media Group | 2807 3rd Ave | Seattle, WA 98121
Desk: 206-728-8287 | Cell: 206-718-9663 | lsheldon@kiro7.com
From: Brian Michael
To: Disclosure, Public
Subject: Request from KOMO
Date: Tuesday, November 19, 2019 2:00:18 PM

[EXTERNAL Email Notice! ] External communication is important to us. Be cautious of phishing attempts. Do not
click or open suspicious links or attachments.

Hello,
In accordance with RCW 42.56, please supply the following:
1. Records since January 1, 2018 related to the presence of
Aspergillus mold at Seattle Children’s Hospital
2. Record in approximately late June/July in which Children’s Hospital
first notified King Co. Public Health about the outbreak
3. A copy of the July 3, 2018 ‘Reactive Media Statement’ prepared by
Danielle Zerr
4. All emails from since Jan. 1, 2018 to or from Dr. Meagan Kay
regarding the presence of Aspergillus at Seattle Children’s Hospital
KOMO-TV will pay reasonable copy fees. By statute, you have five
business days to provide an estimate of when the above records will be
available. Please contact the KOMO-TV Assignment Desk by phone
(206-404-4145) or email tips@komonews.com with the estimated time.
Please also notify us when we can pick up the records.
Should you determine the records cannot be disclosed, please email us
at tips@komonews.com or fax your written determination to us at 206-
404-4422.
Thank you in advance for your prompt attention.
Brian Michael
Assignment Editor
KOMO News
(206) 404-4145
bmichael@komonews.com
EXHIBIT B
From: Sheldon, Linzi (CMG-Seattle)
To: DOH DCHS PRRs; DOH HSQA PDRC External Requests; DOH PCH Public Records Request; DOH Agency PRD
Subject: KIRO-TV Public Records Request
Date: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 2:36:19 PM
Attachments: image001.png

To Whom It May Concern,


My apologies, as I do not know to whom I should direct this email.
Under the Washington Public Records Act, §42.56 et seq., I am
requesting an opportunity to inspect or obtain copies of public records
consisting of communication between
1. Dept of Health employees and Seattle Children’s Hospital
2. Dept of Health employees and King County Public Health
3. Sent or received by Dept of Health employees

between the dates of June 1st, 2018 and present day (11/20/2019) that
include the keywords:
-mold(s)
And/or
-aspergillus/aspergillosis
And/or
-air purification
And/or
-air sampling
And/or
-investigation
I am defining communication as any correspondence, including but not
limited to:
-emails
-text messages
-voicemails
-recorded Skype or Skype-like conversations
-documents
I am defining Dept of Health employees as:
-D’Angeli, Marisa (DOH) ;
-Podczervinski, Sara T (DOH) ;
-Montgomery, Patricia A (DOH)
-any other employees involved in infection prevention and control

I request that these documents be provided in rolling installments as


they become available, moving in reverse chronological order—that
is, providing the most recent emails first and moving backwards.

If there are any fees for searching or copying these records, please
inform me. However, I would also like to request a waiver of all fees in
that the disclosure of the requested information is in the public interest
and will contribute significantly to the public’s understanding of public
health and funds used to regulate. I am a representative of the news
media: I am a reporter at KIRO-TV.

The Washington Public Records Act requires a response to this request


be made within five business days. If access to the records I am
requesting will take longer than this amount of time, please contact me
with information about when I might expect copies or the ability to
inspect the requested records.

If you deny any or all of this request, please cite each specific
exemption you feel justifies the refusal to release the information and
notify me of the appeal procedures available to me under the law.

Please feel free to contact me directly at this email or at my cell at 206-


718-9663. Thank you for considering my request.

Linzi Sheldon

Linzi Sheldon | Investigative Reporter & Weekend Anchor | KIRO 7


Cox Media Group | 2807 3rd Ave | Seattle, WA 98121
Desk: 206-728-8287 | Cell: 206-718-9663 | lsheldon@kiro7.com

D’Angeli, Marisa (DOH) ;


Podczervinski, Sara T (DOH) ;
Montgomery, Patricia A (DOH)
Linzi Sheldon | Investigative Reporter & Weekend Anchor | KIRO 7
Cox Media Group | 2807 3rd Ave | Seattle, WA 98121
Desk: 206-728-8287 | Cell: 206-718-9663 | lsheldon@kiro7.com
From: DOH Agency PRD
To: Elwanger, Susan M (DOH)
Subject: FW: MEDIA: Public Records Disclosure request
Date: Tuesday, January 14, 2020 2:31:48 PM
Attachments: image001.png
image002.png
image003.png
image005.png
Importance: High

FYI
 
Phyllis Barney
Public Records Officer
Office for Civil Rights & Risk Management
Washington State Department of Health
Phyllis.Barney@doh.wa.gov
360-236-4220 | www.doh.wa.gov

 
From: DOH HSQA PDRC External Requests
Sent: Tuesday, December 3, 2019 2:33 PM
To: Barney, Phyllis (DOH) <Phyllis.Barney@doh.wa.gov>
Subject: MEDIA: Public Records Disclosure request
Importance: High
 
Good afternoon Phyllis,
 
We received this request from KING5 news for all communications from June 1, 2019 regarding
Aspergillus and Seattle Children’s Hospital. I know that Susie’s team is working on the other media
request regarding this. My experience with this is that we’ll turn up some communications here, but
it seems that the majority of communications are likely to be within DCHS. Should they take the lead
on this or do you want our division to handle it?
 
Please advise.
 
Sincerely,
 
 
Richard Stringfellow
Forms and Records Analyst 3
Health Systems Quality Assurance
Public Disclosure Unit
Washington State Department of Health
richard.stringfellow@doh.wa.gov
360-236-4832 | www.doh.wa.gov
Gender Pronouns: he/him
 
 
 
From: Ingalls, Christopher [mailto:cingalls@king5.com]
Sent: Tuesday, December 3, 2019 12:35 PM
To: DOH HSQA PDRC External Requests <PDRC@DOH.WA.GOV>
Subject: Public Records Disclosure request
 
Greetings,
 
This is a records request from KING 5 News.  Please call reporter Chris Ingalls if there are questions.
 
Thank you
 
PUBLIC RECORDS REQUEST
 
Dear Public Disclosure Officer:
 
Pursuant to the state open records law, Wash. Rev. Code Secs. 42.56.001 to 42.56.904 I
request access to and an electronic copy of:
 
            -records, communications, email, video, photos since June 1, 2019 related to
Aspergillus mold at Seattle Children’s Hospital
 
 
The statute requires public agencies to "provide for the fullest assistance to inquirers and
the most timely possible action on requests for information." (RCW 42.56.100) The statute
also provides that exemptions to disclosure generally are discretionary, and that the agency
cannot be held liable for good-faith release of public records. (RCW 42.56.060)
 
Accordingly, as a journalist working on a deadline, I request to receive these records as
soon as possible and as they become available, rather than waiting for the entire request to
be ready for inspection or disclosure. Please notify me by telephone (206-448-3980)or
email (cingalls@KING5.com) when records are available.
 
As provided by the open records law, I will expect your response within five (5) business
days.  Please contact me if you have any questions or need clarification.
 
Thank you for your assistance.
 
Sincerely,
 
 
Chris Ingalls
News Reporter
cingalls@king5.com  |   P. 206-448-3980
Cell 206-604-0574
1501 First Avenue South, Suite 300
Seattle, WA  98134
 
From: DOH Agency PRD
To: Elwanger, Susan M (DOH)
Subject: FW: Seattle Children"s request 2
Attachments: image002.png

FYI
Phyllis Barney
Public Records Officer
Office for Civil Rights & Risk Management
Washington State Department of Health
Phyllis.Barney@doh.wa.gov
360-236-4220 | www.doh.wa.gov

From: DOH HSQA PDRC External Requests


Sent: Tuesday, December 3, 2019 3:03 PM
To: DOH Agency PRD
Subject: Seattle Children's request 2
From: Jesica McClure [mailto:Jesica@stritmatter.com]
Sent: Tuesday, December 3, 2019 12:54 PM
To: DOH HSQA PDRC External Requests <PDRC@DOH.WA.GOV>
Subject: Records Request
Good Afternoon –
I am emailing to request all materials related to:
1. Seattle Children’s Hospital and mold
2. Seattle Children’s Hospital and Aspergillus
3. Seattle Children’s Hospital and ventilation
4. Seattle Children’s Hospital and environmental engineering
Thank you.
Jesica A. McClure
Paralegal
STRITMATTER KESSLER
KOEHLER MOORE
3600 15th Ave W, Suite 300 | Seattle, WA 98119
Tel: 206.448.1777 | Fax: 206.728.2131