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Update on Investigations into Legionnaires Disease Outbreak

May 18, 2011 4:18 PM

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A further two cases of legionnaires’ disease have been confirmed as investigations into an outbreak of the disease continue.

Both individuals are responding well to treatment.

Dr Syed Ahmed, NHSGGC lead consultant in public health, said: “It is important to note that the two newly confirmed cases were exposed to the disease and began displaying symptoms at around the same time as the previous cases.”

The two newly confirmed cases takes the total number of individuals confirmed as having the disease to nine, three of whom have died.

Two cases have already recovered and have been discharged from hospital.

Seven of these cases are from the Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board area and two of the confirmed cases are from Lanarkshire Health Board area.

The Public Health Protection Units from both NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) and NHS Lanarkshire are working together in a joint investigation with Health Protection Scotland (HPS), the Health and Safety Executive, environmental health officers and other partner agencies.

Dr Syed Ahmed, NHSGGC lead consultant in public health, continued: “Despite our very thorough investigations to date we have been unable to find a common source for the infections.

“Together with NHS Lanarkshire, HPS, environmental health and other colleagues we are investigating each and every case to identify a common source.

“Investigations are also continuing into common community sources of the disease such as cooling towers however any possible source has not been identified.

“I would also like to stress that legionella cannot be spread from person to person. It is a bacteria found in water and can be spread through aerosols produced from water, such as air conditioning and showers and it cannot be contracted by drinking contaminated water.

“The symptoms and signs of legionnaires’ disease include headache, fever, dry cough, breathing difficulties, stomach pains and diarrhoea. I would like to advise anyone currently with these symptoms to contact NHS 24 tel: 08454 24 24 24 or their own GP.”

ENDS

For more information, contact the press office tel: 0141 201 4429 or email: press.offi[email protected]

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