Seven dead, 86 infected as New York officials identify and disinfect cooling towers filled with Legionnaires bacteria

News For The Blind

The death toll from an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in New York grew to seven as investigators identified and disinfected five air-conditioning cooling towers in the South Bronx that tested positive for the bacteria that causes the disease.

New Yorkers have been on high alert since July 10 when the outbreak was first identified and have been flooding doctors offices and hospitals with symptoms of fever, cough, chills, muscle aches and other signs of the disease. A type of severe pneumonia, Legionnaires’ disease — which was named after an outbreak during a 1976 meeting of the American Legion in Philadelphia — is not spread from person to person but by breathing in mist with the organisms. Outbreaks usually occur in the summer.

In New York this year, 86 people have been confirmed to have been infected with the disease as of Tuesday. The cluster is large enough to worry public health…

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