Health officials have reduced the number of confirmed cases linked to the Legionnaires’ disease outbreak in Alabama from 15 to 14 because one individual who was ill from Legionella had not been to Florence. This still leaves 14 confirmed cases with links to the Glenwood Nursing Home in Florence, Ala.
10 other patients are suspected to have Legionella pneumonia, but are still pending test results.
According to Dr. Karen Landers, Assistant State Health Officer at the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH), “Physicians and hospitals are monitoring the situation closely and are working to find any new cases of illness. Antibiotics prescribed by physicians to treat community acquired pneumonia are effective for Legionella, so no special antibiotics are needed.”
The Journal of Legionella and the Law recently reported the discovery of Legionella bacteria in three cooling towers nearby (two at the Regency Square Mall and one at the Southwire manufacturing factory); testing is still underway to determine if there is a connection between these Legionella-positive cooling towers and the Glenwood Nursing Home facility.
The nursing home is still open and is going through a remediation process; water vapor-generating sources have yet to be identified.