Outbreak of Legionnaires’ Disease at Super 8 Hotel, Franklin County

Estimated read time 4 min read

The Missouri Division of Health and Elderly Services (DHSS) reports two cases of Legionnaires’ disease at the Super 8 hotel in St. Clair, Missouri. The severe pulmonary disease was found in two people who stayed at this Outer Road hotel in April. The DHSS suspects that the water system of the hotel harbored the Legionella bacteria causing the disease.

Outbreak Information

A facility assessment carried out by DHSS and water samples from the hotel have shown presence of Legionella bacteria in the system. The diagnosed individuals had symptoms within two weeks from their stay there.

 

About Legionnaires’ Disease

Legionnaires’ disease is a serious type of pneumonia arising from inhaling small droplets containing Legionella bacteria. This infection, not typically spread via direct human contact, still poses significant health risk especially for particular vulnerable groups. Corresponding symptoms include coughing, breathing difficulty, muscle pains, headaches with fever, along with confusion, nausea or diarrhea. Early detection and treatment via antibiotics are important for recovery.

 

Taken Measures

DHSS is collaborating effectively with Super 8 to fix issues in its water system to avoid further infections. Those who made bookings directly through Super 8 have been informed by them while others who booked via third-party sites might not be reached out to yet. Tourists showing pneumonia like symptoms post their stay at Super 8 St. Clair are being persuaded to seek immediate medical help.

 

Risk Categories

Certain segments bear higher susceptibility towards contracting Legionnaires’ disease such as those aged over 50 years. Persons having weakened immune systems. people suffering from chronic lung conditions. Current smokers and those recipients of immune weakening drugs. Typically, symptoms appear between 2 to 10 days, but sometimes as late as two weeks after exposure.

 

Legionnaires’ Disease, A Historical Context

In 1976 the Bellevue Stratford Hotel in Philadelphia experienced an outbreak during a convention of Pennsylvania State American Legion which resulted in the identification of Legionnaires’ disease. The incident led to 221 cases with 34 fatalities and was caused by Legionella bacteria residing in the hotel’s air conditioning unit. The Legionella bacteria has since been given close attention for prevention of the disease post this event.

 

Welcome to Noteworthy Historical Outbreaks

An outbreak in Washington, D.C.’s St. Elizabeth’s psychiatric hospital observed 81 cases with 14 fatalities in 1965. Pontiac Fever infected the Michigan, Health Department affecting 144 people with no reported deaths. Another incident took place at Bellevue Stratford Hotel involving members of Independent Order of Odd Fellows in 1974. These key historical instances stress on dutiful maintenance and regular monitoring of water systems for halting spreading of Legionella bacteria.

 

Precautionary Steps

The DHSS is partnering up with Super 8 hotel to establish a protocol around water management aimed at safeguarding guests and staff health. This includes routine test and monitoring procedures for water systems, proper chlorination setup and maintaining hot water temperature levels, prompt reporting and responding towards potential cases. Early discovery and treatment are pivotal for managing this disease effectively.

 

Symptoms Alert

Super 8 visitors from April should get immediate medical help on experiencing pneumonia symptoms. They should also request urine tests along with respiratory culture for possible detection of deadly Legionella bacteria. Any positive findings must be swiftly reported to State or local health department officials.

 

Reporting to Health Officials

If there are any suspected instances of Legionella bacteria exposure, make sure to promptly reach out to centers like Local, County or State Health Departments. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) dialing 800CDCINFO.

 

Wrapping Up

Recent occurrences of Legionnaires’ disease at St. Clair’s Super 8 brings attention towards the pressing need for steady monitoring and upkeep of water systems. Through proactive preventive actions and common awareness, we can minimize future outbreak risks, ensuring security and welfare of all individuals.

Celina Brooks https://www.southcountymail.com

Celina Brooks from Mussoorie is a Writer & Researcher. She earned her Engineering degree in IT from Rutgers University. She is a technology enthusiast but loves writing and talking about local news as well. She is a jolly person with 2 children.

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