Sick with Legionnaires?
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Elliot Olsen is a nationally known Legionnaires lawyer who has regained millions for clients. If you or a family member were sickened in this Mount Carmel Legionnaires outbreak, you might have cause to file a lawsuit. Please call (612) 337-6126 for a free consultation.
The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) warned that additional cases were possible in the Mount Carmel Legionnaires outbreak in Grove City, and it was right: Three cases were added to the total, increasing it to 10 at the month-old hospital in suburban Columbus.
The ODH previously announced that one of the original seven patients confirmed with Legionnaires’ disease died Sunday.
Tests at the Mount Carmel Grove City hospital determined that Legionella, the bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease, was present on the seventh floor and in the emergency room of the $361 million, seven-floor, 200-plus-bed hospital, which opened April 28.
Franklin County Public Health (FCPH) confirmed that of the 10 outbreak patients, six are women and four are men. Ages range between 50 and 90, with an average age of 72, and the range of exposure dates is April 27 to May 24.
A 2015 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated that “75 percent of (Legionnaires’ disease) acquired in health-care settings could be prevented with better water management.”
Mount Carmel Legionnnaires outbreak: warning issued
If you have been a patient, visitor, or are an employee of Mount Carmel Grove City and you are feeling pneumonia- or flu-like symptoms (see below), you should seek immediate medical attention. If you have questions or would like more information about the outbreak, please contact Mount Carmel Grove City hospital at (614) 265-8111.
The disease usually develops two to 10 days after exposure to Legionella, and it frequently begins with the following symptoms:
- muscle aches
- fever, which can be 104 degrees Fahrenheit or higher.
By Day 2 or 3, symptoms often worsen to include:
- coughing, which can produce mucus and/or blood
- shortness of breath (called dyspnea)
- chest pains (called pleuritic chest pain, or pleurisy)
- gastrointestinal symptoms (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea)
- confusion and other mental changes.
Although Legionnaires’ disease primarily affects the lungs, it occasionally can cause infections elsewhere in the body, including the heart.
Mount Carmel Legionnnaires outbreak: Franklin Co. woes
According to ODH statistics, Franklin County reported the state’s highest number of Legionnaires’ disease cases last year at 208. Cuyahoga County had the second-highest number of cases at 148, followed by Montgomery County at 58.
The National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System (NNDSS) listed Ohio – along with California, New York City, New York state, and Pennsylvania – as the areas with the highest number of confirmed Legionnaires cases in 2015 (the most recent year data was released). There were nearly 50,000 confirmed Legionnaires’ cases reported to the NNDSS from 2000 to 2015, according to the CDC.
Mount Carmel Legionnnaires outbreak: most susceptible
Most people exposed to Legionella do not get sick, but people who are 50 years old or older – especially smokers or people with chronic lung conditions (COPD, which includes emphysema and bronchitis) – are at a higher risk. Other groups of people most susceptible to the bacteria include:
- organ-transplant recipients
- anyone on a specific drug protocol (corticosteroids, to name one)
Also included on the list are people with immune systems weakened by:
- frequent and recurrent pneumonia, bronchitis, sinus infections, ear infections, meningitis or skin infections
- organ inflammation and infection
- blood disorders, such as low platelet counts or anemia
- digestive problems (cramping, appetite loss)
- delayed growth and development.
Mount Carmel Legionnnaires outbreak: complications
After Legionnaires’ disease is diagnosed, hospitalization is almost always required. In the most severe cases, complications can include respiratory failure, kidney failure, septic shock, or even death.
According to CDC statistics, about one out of every 10 people (10 percent) infected with the disease will die due to complications from it. For patients sickened with the disease while they are a patient in a health-care facility, about one out of every four (25 percent) will die.
Elliot Olsen has decades of experience representing people harmed by Legionnaires’ disease. You can contact him for a free consultation by filling out the following form and submitting it: