4 people dead from Legionella infections in Poland

4 people dead from Legionella infections in Poland

Number in hospital with infections rises to 71

By Burak Bir

LONDON (AA) - Four people have died from Legionella bacteria in southeastern Poland, according to media reports Wednesday.

The number who have died rose to four after an infected patient died at the Podkarpackie Center for Lung Diseases in Rzeszow city, state-run PAP news agency reported.

Earlier Wednesday, Poland reported its third fatality from the bacteria after an elderly patient died at the same hospital.

The number of patients in the hospital with infections rose to 71, said PAP, citing the head of Rzeszow Sanitary Inspectorate, Jaromir Slaczka.

The bacteria that causes Legionnaires disease, a type of pneumonia, was first identified in 1977 as the cause of an outbreak of severe pneumonia in a convention center in the US in 1976.

The most common form of transmission is inhalation of contaminated aerosols produced in conjunction with water sprays, jets or mists of contaminated water sources, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

The WHO said of the reported global cases, 75–80% are older than 50 with 60-70% male.

The bacteria also made headlines recently after asylum seekers were moved in early August from the UK's floating migrant barge, Bibby Stockholm, after the bacteria was found in the on-board water system.

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