Slight rise in Legionnaires' cases at veterans home, no change i - Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Slight rise in Legionnaires' cases at veterans home, no change in death toll


As health officials continue their investigation into the outbreak of Legionnaires' disease at the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy, there's been a slight rise in cases.

Cases at the veterans home were up to 48 on Thursday, but the death toll remained at seven.

Adams County Health Department Administrator Jerrod Welch said Wednesday afternoon, there were also four confirmed Legionnaires' cases outside of the vets home, including one case, where a person from Sunset Home died.

Shay Drummond, with the Adams County Health Department, said no more residents at the home have been taken to health care providers in the past 72 hours with symptoms of Legionnaires'. She says there haven't been any more reports of cases outside the home.

Wednesday, officials confirmed 6 people were at Blessing Hospital. Thursday, doctors say they continue to send patients home.

"As of 9:30 this morning, we had four patients still here," said Dr. Mary Frances Barthel with Blessing Health System.

Dr. Barthel says with the team at the veterans home being proactive in catching symptoms early, doctors are able to more effectively treat patients.

"There are antibiotics that are very effective against the disease," she said. "So, if someone presents with fairly severe symptoms, they would be admitted to the hospital and given IV medications until they improve clinically, and then they can be switched to oral medications and discharged." 

Dr. Barthel says if you think you have symptoms, depending on the severity, seek medical treatment.

"If someone is experiencing high fever, shortness of breath, especially if they have underlying health conditions like chronic lung disease or a smoking history, then it would be more appropriate to present urgently if needed, to the emergency room," she said.

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