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NJ NURSING HOME RESIDENT’S ILLNESS CONFIRMED
The water system of the Morris View Healthcare Center in in Morris Township, NJ, will undergo hyperchlorination in the facility’s ongoing efforts to rid the system of Legionella, the bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease.
A resident of the 238-bed nursing home was confirmed with Legionnaires’ disease in June during routine testing, despite displaying no symptoms. After that diagnosis, 24 residents exhibited respiratory symptoms, but none tested positive for Legionnaires’ disease, according to Morris County administrator John Bonanni.
Legionella was discovered in a water faucet during testing of a resident’s room, prompting immediate remediation of the water system. The bacteria were located in several other areas of the nursing home since.
Bonanni said the county took numerous corrective actions when the bacteria was first detected, including:
- analysis of the water system
- bottled water brought in
- filters installed on shower heads
- aerators removed from sinks
- kitchen modifications made for food preparation.
Remediation includes plumbing upgrades and scheduled monitoring of the water system over the next few years.
LEGIONELLA FOUND AT NY HOTEL
Legionella bacteria was discovered in the pool and spa area at the Watkins Glen Harbor Hotel in Schuyler County, according to the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH), and guests may have been exposed to the sometimes-deadly bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease.
The NYSDOH and hotel are working together to contact individuals who stayed at the hotel, located on the south end of Seneca Lake, between July 16 and August 1 to inform them of the situation and confirm whether they were in proximity to the infected area.
There has been no confirmation of any illnesses connected to the hotel.
“You literally have to breathe in the water particles, which makes it a little more uncommon,” says Marcia Kasprzyk, director of public health in Schuyler County. “It’s the same as any other pneumonia. Sometimes the trick is knowing you’ve been exposed to even think of [getting] tested.”
The hotel has closed its pool and spa to patrons as workers remediate the facility.
Guests, visitors or employees of the hotel between the affected dates who are feeling flu-like symptoms should seek immediate care from their health-care provider.
TWEET: CASE CONFIRMED AT NY NURSING HOME
The New York State Department of Health confirmed a case of Legionnaires’ disease at Excel Woodbury, a rehabilitation and nursing facility in Woodbury, according to a Tweet by @DanielleNLeigh, an investigative reporter for ABC 7 News.
“The @HealthNYGov confirmed a case of legionnaires disease at a nursing home in Woodbury. A spokesperson said the state is working with Excel to test water samples taken throughout the facility and develop a remediation plan to prevent additional cases of legionellosis,” reads the entirety of her tweet.
No other information has been released.
ILLINOIS CAPITOL AGAIN POSITIVE FOR LEGIONELLA
Cooling towers at an office building at the Illinois State Capitol Complex in Springfield are undergoing disinfection efforts after a “marginally positive” test result was returned for Legionella.
The Capitol Complex, which is comprised of 14 buildings, has been monitored more closely since the presence of Legionella was detected in the Illinois State Armory in January. Three other buildings in the complex tested positive in February.
Water quality throughout the complex has maintained an acceptable level, which officials say is due to a flushing program instituted this year.
TEXAS HOSPITAL POSITIVE FOR LEGIONELLA
Routine testing of the water system at Ochiltree General Hospital in Perryton, Texas, returned positive results for Legionella bacteria, according to hospital officials, but no patients or staff have been infected with Legionnaires’ disease.
Hospital officials said testing returned three positive results for Legionella out of 28 samples collected. The water supply is routinely tested to detect contamination and implement infection control measures to protect patients, employees, and staff.
As a precaution, the hospital has shut down the water supply to specific areas of the hospital, and limited access to other areas. Showers are not permitted at this time, and bottled water and ice is being distributed.
PALM SPRINGS POOL REMAINS CLOSED
Residents have been informed that more positive tests for Legionella bacteria will keep the pool at the Four Seasons Palm Springs in Palm Springs, CA, closed for the foreseeable future. A letter sent to residents this month revealed that six of the 11 areas that tested positive for Legionella in June tested positive again.
Environmental testing of the pool and spa area was originally ordered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention after it learned in June that two residents were sickened with Legionnaires’ disease earlier in the year. Those tests linked the pool’s bacteria to the same strain of Legionella that sickened the two individuals in January.
Four Seasons management is planning on having the pipes replaced and conducting hypothermal flushing to eliminate the dangerous bacteria. The closure will be in place until the facility is cleared by the Riverside County Department of Environmental Health (REHS).
Residents use the pool and spa areas as a source of relief and comfort from the heat. Daily high temperatures in the Palm Springs area are forecast to hit triple digits throughout August, so the continued closure, which started in late June, remains an inconvenience.
While there have been no new Legionnaires’ illnesses since January, because of the repeated positive tests for Legionella, residents, employees, and visitors to Four Seasons Palm Springs exhibiting pneumonia- or flu-like symptoms should seek medical attention from their health-care provider out of an abundance of caution.