DMW Environmental Safety

Legionnaires’ disease identified in Gloucester hospital

A patient may have become infected with Legionnaires’ disease while at a hospital’s dialysis unit – after Legionella bacteria was found in a patient at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.

Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said the patient “may have acquired” it at the unit. The hospital said no other patients were affected and “enhanced control measures” removed the risk of it spreading.

What is legionnaires disease?

  • It is a potentially fatal lung infection caused by Legionella bacteria
  • It is caught by breathing in small droplets of contaminated water
  • Initial symptoms include a high fever and muscle pain
  • It is treated by intravenous antibiotics

Legionella bacteria are commonly found in sources of water, such as rivers and lakes, which sometimes find their way into artificial water supply systems.

large buildings such as communal accommodation, care homes, hospitals and office blocks are more vulnerable to Legionella contamination because they have larger, more complex water supply systems and the bacteria can quickly spread.

An estimated 10% of people who contract the disease will die from complications arising from infection.

Visit the BBC News website here…

legionella-logo-smallFor details of how DMW can assist you identify and control the risks of legionella speak to our Water Hygiene Manager, Ben Williams.