Disease tests at veterans home return negative

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QUINCY, Ill. (WAND) – A test for Legionnaires’ disease at a Quincy veterans home came back with mostly negative results.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say 47 of 48 samples from testing at the Illinois Veterans’ Home were negative. The only positive sample came from water inside of a shower head, which the Illinois Department of Public Health says residents in the home would be safe from, as the head in question has a point-of-use filter to remove Legionella.

Even with the negative tests, the home has still seen five residents and an employee test positive for Legionnaires’ disease in 2017. Medical leaders identified two positive cases of the disease in October and one in November.

Twelve people died during a 2015 outbreak at the same home. At least 10 lawsuits against the state are in the Illinois Court of Claims. The are accusing the state of negligence, but the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs office says the Quincy facility did everything it could.

IDPH says the CDC will have to come back to the home and do more testing to figure out what is causing the spread of Legionnaires’ disease.

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