Piatt County Nursing Home Legionnaires’ Disease [Update]

Updated April 24 with water test information A resident of the Piatt County Nursing Home in Monticello, IL has died from a fatal Legionnaires’ disease infection. Scott Porter, the facility’s executive director, confirmed the death to WCIA. He said the resident died on April 15 after being hospitalized and that the county and state health departments have been notified.

Other cases have not been confirmed, but it’s possible Legionella, the bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease, was the source of another resident’s illness earlier this year, Porter said. Several other residents have shown mild symptoms, but their tests were not positive for Legionella, he said.

Do You Need a Legionnaires’ Disease Lawyer?

How is Legionnaires’ Disease Spread?

Legionnaires’ disease, a severe form of pneumonia, isn’t contagious. People get these infections when they inhale water vapor that is contaminated with Legionella bacteria which often grow in the warm water of manmade structures such as fountains, hot tubs, and the plumbing systems of large commercial buildings. Hospitals and nursing homes are frequently linked to outbreaks.

Water management plans can prevent the overgrowth of Legionella and are considered a standard business practice in healthcare settings, hotels, and other commercial buildings by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In Illinois, there is a law requiring nursing homes to have a Legionella testing plan. The plan must state how frequently tests will be conducted and results must be available to the health department upon request.

Tests and Remediation

The Illinois Department of Public Health told The News-Gazette that all bulk hot water samples from the facility were positive for Legionella. Filters have been placed on some faucets and the use of others has been temporarily discontinued.

Porter posted the following letter on the nursing home’s website:

Hello Everyone

I would like to clarify that the water issues at the Piatt County Nursing Home are strictly an internal issue, isolated completely within its water system. Our ongoing investigation and remediation of Legionella has nothing to do with the water we receive from the City of Monticello. We have been through an initial round of testing last week and in that test genetic material for Legionella was found in the samples of water taken from our hot water system. More testing and details on those tests are pending but, as part of this initial test the incoming water from the city source is tested as a baseline to compare to samples taken within the nursing home. The incoming water from the city showed zero traces of genetic material for Legionella. I want to make this point clear and help people be assured that this issue is isolated to the nursing home only, and has nothing to do with larger water supply provided by the City of Monticello. I sincerely hope this helps to alleviate any concerns the public might have about their drinking water, and I apologize that our situation has cast any doubts on to the safety of the public’s drinking water.

Most Sincerely,

Scott Porter
Executive Director

Legionnaires' disease

Experienced Legionnaires’ Disease Lawyers

The Pritzker Hageman Legionnaires’ Disease lawyers recently won a significant recovery for the family of a woman who died from Legionnaires’ Disease. One of the first steps you should take after being diagnosed with Legionnaires’ disease is to consult with an experienced lawyer. For a free consultation with one of our lawyers, please call 612-338-0202, text 612-261-0856, or fill out the form below.

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