Health officials trying to stop spread of Legionnaires' disease - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Health officials trying to stop spread of Legionnaires' disease

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An outbreak of Legionnaires' disease at Quincy's Illinois Veterans Home have left residents dead, and the number of lab-confirmed cases on the property keeps climbing. An outbreak of Legionnaires' disease at Quincy's Illinois Veterans Home have left residents dead, and the number of lab-confirmed cases on the property keeps climbing.
QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -

It's a disease that's spreading fast, and the source is still unknown.

"That there were two cases, but I didn't really pay much attention to it," Donna Nell said. "So, I was surprised."

An outbreak of Legionnaires' disease at Quincy's Illinois Veterans Home have left residents dead, and the number of lab-confirmed cases on the property keeps climbing.

Shay Drummond with the Adams County Health Department said the vets home has been working with the Department of Public Health, the CDC and Blessing Hospital with teams doing around-the-clock testing.

"There's a lot of places that could be a source and it's out in the community, so it's not a straightforward thing to find," Drummond said. "That's why we have so many people working on this process."

Health officials say it's going to get worse before it gets better. Even if officials determine a source of the outbreak soon, because it takes up to 10 days for symptoms to show up, they could have cases now that they don't even know about.

"We're trying to be proactive in making sure that they're getting the proper treatments necessary," Cathy Houston, Director of Nursing at the Quincy Veterans Home said. "So, we're doing testing on anybody showing any signs or symptoms."

Houston says water-based bacteria can be more damaging to patients at the home.

"When you have residents that have other health conditions, whether it be cardiac or kidney problems, or diabetes, any of those things, they do make people a little more susceptible," she said.

"It seems to be spreading fast, so I hope that they can get a handle on it because these people they've got enough health problems now, they don't need extra," Nell said.

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