Legionella in the News
April 4, 2021 – Newark, NJ: Legionella was detected in a medical building at Northern State Prison in Newark, according to the document, and staff have since moved inmates out of the affected area. The bacteria causes Legionnaire’s disease, a form of pneumonia especially dangerous for people with compromised immune systems, according to the Mayo Clinic.
April 6, 2021 – ElPaso, TX: EPWater warns “The last thing you would want to do is open up a school or an office building without properly flushing the drains and pipes, then have to send everyone back home again because it’s unsafe… preparation is key.”
January 15, 2021 – Flint, MI: The Michigan Attorney General’s Office formally charged two top state health department employees with nine counts of involuntary manslaughter Thursday. Those nine charges are connected to nine people who died of Legionnaires’ disease from June through August 2015, during Flint’s water crisis.
January 7, 2021 – Portland: Legionnaires’ disease cases grow in Portland seniors apartment building outbreak. There has been 1 death and 4 hospitalizations and nearly 100 residents of the building have been temporarily moved into motels until the building’s water system and plumbing can be properly cleaned and determined to be safe.
October 27, 2020 – Israel: Legionnaires disease was detected in the coronavirus wards of the Sharon campus of the Rabin Medical Center in central Israel on Monday during a routine inspection. The hospital administration said none of the patients had developed symptoms of the disease and were all moved to an underground emergency ward for treatment.
October 20, 2020 – St Louis Public Radio: Legionnaires’ disease killed 12 people and sickened dozens more at the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy in 2015. Research has found that Quincy made major changes to its water treatment processes in the months leading up to the Legionnaires’ disease outbreak and that “… for every 1 milligram per liter drop in chlorine concentration, the chances of seeing a case of Legionnaires’ disease increased by 80%.”
October 14, 2020 – The Guardian: Legionella in water is sickening and sometimes killing Americans, with the current reopening of buildings prompting fresh concerns. A resident at Arlington Court skilled nursing and rehab center in suburban Columbus, Ohio, died in late February. Arlington Court was just one of at least five Columbus-area facilities to report an outbreak of legionnaires’ disease since May 2019.
September 17, 2020 – CBS 58: Health officials in Sheboygan County, Wisconsin are looking into cases of Legionnaires’ disease. Two facilities, Pine Haven Christian Communities assisted living center in Oostburg, and the MilliporSigma plant in Sheboygan Falls, are being tested as possible sources.
September 10, 2020 – NBC Philadelphia: Legionnaires’ Disease Bacteria Found in Some Ohio Schools. Schools in the Dayton, Ohio, area are recommended to flush out water system after legionella bacteria was found in stagnant water.
August 8, 2020 – New York Times: CDC closes some offices over bacteria discovery. The move highlights the risk of Legionnaires’ disease outbreaks when buildings are reopened after coronavirus lockdowns.
June 19, 2020 – Reuters: Insurers worry about Legionnaires’ risks as buildings reopen. The pandemic shutdown of businesses and schools has led to an unprecedented amount of stagnant water in dormant buildings.
June 2, 2020 – WGRZ.com Do you need to worry about water in the pipes in reopening buildings? Stagnant water is not a new thing, but scientists and health authorities have released guidelines for dealing with it and its related health risks during the COVID-19 pandemic.
June 2, 2020 – St Louis Business Journals As empty offices welcome employees back, experts caution those dormant buildings also could have inadvertently welcomed dangerous bacteria into its facilities.
May 29, 2020 – CBS News There may be health risks other than coronavirus as office buildings reopen their doors to employees and visitors. If the buildings did not have water flowing through their pipes during the lengthy shutdowns, that stagnation could potentially put people at risk of Legionnaires’ disease.
May 18, 2020 – Florida: As Florida reopens, health officials are warning businesses to make sure their water systems are thoroughly flushed out because a bacteria that causes a severe form of pneumonia could be present in the pipes.
May 18, 2020 – Illinois: Legionnaires’ Disease, which took 43 lives in Illinois last year, could make a comeback amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Alliance to Prevent Legionnaires’ Disease spokesperson Bob Bowcock explained neglected water systems in shuttered workplaces provide a perfect breeding ground for the Legionella bacteria, which carries the disease.
February 27, 2020 – Waukegan: The Lake County Health Department continues to investigate an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease at the Brookdale Vernon Hills senior living facility on Milwaukee Avenue in Vernon Hills. Since receiving initial reports of Legionnaires’ disease at the facility, a total of five confirmed cases have been identified, including one death.
February 26, 2020 – Allegheny County Jail employee diagnosed with Legionnaires’ disease. The news about the jail came just days after the county Health Department said it was investigating a case of Legionnaires’ disease at the county Department of Human Services office in downtown Pittsburgh.
February 19, 2020 – Westmoreland: For more than three weeks, 400 residents and hundreds of workers at the county-owned facility were prohibited from using tap water to drink, for hygiene or for cleaning after Legionella bacteria were found in the water.
February 14, 2020 – Legionella Conference 2020 focuses on prevention of health care-associated waterborne diseases. Co-hosted by NSF Health Sciences, an NSF International company, and the National Environmental Health Association on Aug. 19-21 in Chicago.
January 22, 2020 – Tyler, Texas: The disease is highly preventable. “If someone is keeping a close eye on the water supply, the disease can be prevented. It’s all about stopping the bacteria from proliferating.”
January 18, 2020 – Fatal outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in Illinois under investigation. State and local authorities are investigating three cases of Legionnaires’ disease — two of them fatal — at a Covenant Living retirement home in Carol Stream.
Jan. 4, 2020 – Illinois: Legionnaires’ Disease reported at Quincy Veterans home. The Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA) and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) are investigating a single case of Legionnaires’ disease in a resident at the Illinois Veterans Home – Quincy (IVHQ). The resident has received medical treatment and is recovering at IVHQ.
Jan. 4, 2020 – HIQA report recorded low staff take-up of ’flu jab. The hospital has experienced an ongoing outbreak of the superbug CPE (Carbapenemase Producing Enterobacterales) since June 2017 and continued to screen in excess of the national HSE CPE screening guidelines. It had also had outbreak of Legionnaire’s Disease in 2018.
Dec. 11, 2019 – Washington Heights, NY. Defending in the lawsuits is Sugar Hill’s parent company, Broadway Housing Communities, Inc., and cooling tower company Clarity Water Technologies LLC. The charge is negligence. In all, 32 have come down with Legionnaires, with one death.
Nov. 27, 2019 – Flint was a ‘wake-up call.’ Did we learn from it? In the meantime, new drinking water crises have popped up across the country — including in Newark, N.J., and New Orleans, leading advocates to wonder whether there really were any lessons learned from Flint?
Nov. 5, 2019 – CDC Reports Cases of Legionnaires’ disease reached a record high in 2018 — a more than eight-fold increase since the numbers began to climb nearly two decades ago.
Nov. 1, 2019 – Third Legionnaires’ Disease Case At Mt. Carmel East. Water restrictions and testing at the hospital are underway. The source of the legionella bacteria has yet to be identified. 16 people at Mount Carmel Grove City were diagnosed earlier this year, including one person who died.
Nov. 1, 2019 – The Northeast Texas Public Health District, is investigating an outbreak of Legionella bacteria, and said those who attended the 2019 East Texas State Fair in Tyler should be cautious of symptoms.
Oct. 28, 2019 – Washington, D.C.-based St. Elizabeths Hospital resumed normal water usage Oct. 23, the same day two civil rights groups filed a lawsuit over the psychiatric hospital’s handling of a 28-day water outage. St. Elizabeths shut off its water after the Sept. 26 discovery of Legionella bacteria in its water system.
Oct. 27, 2019 – Health unit gives green light to restart Rotary Place cooling tower. The tower was shut down on Friday after the health unit says tests indicated higher than normal levels of legionella bacteria in the tower. Nine people in the Orillia area have been diagnosed with Legionnaires’ disease.