Legionella bacteria can be transmitted when people inhale contaminated aerosols and can occur by aspiration of contaminated water or ice, particularly in susceptible patients in hospital environments.
Legionnaires’ disease has claimed a fifth life among patients and staff at a clinic in northern Argentina.
The Health Ministry in Tucuman province had announced four earlier deaths on Saturday, all in the clinic in San Miguel de Tucuman, and said a total of 11 people had been infected by the rare but severe lung disease.
The latest death was that of a 64-year-old man with co-morbidities, provincial health officials announced on Sunday.
Of the six others infected, three remain in hospital and the others are being monitored at home, said Luis Medina Cruz, the Tucuman health minister.
Local officials said they are examining the clinic’s water supply and air-conditioning system.
The disease, which first appeared at a 1976 convention of the American Legion veterans group in the United States, has been linked to contaminated water and unclean aeration systems. Symptoms include high fever, aches and trouble breathing.
An Argentinian laboratory identified the disease as Legionnaires’ after ruling out Covid-19, flu and hantavirus.
Health Minister Carla Vizzotti told a news conference on Saturday that Legionnaires’ disease has a significant impact on people with risk conditions over 50 years old. Antibiotic treatment was needed, she said.
Source: TRTWorld and agencies