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25th June 2012 – The number of people thought to have been affected by a recent outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in Edinburgh has risen to 95.  There are now 48 confirmed cases and 47 suspected cases, with three of the patients in intensive care.  The first case was identified on 31 May and two people have died.  Legionellosis is the collective name given to the pneumonia-like illness caused by legionella bacteria. This includes the most serious legionnaires’ disease, as well as the similar but less serious conditions of Pontiac fever and Lochgoilhead fever. Legionnaires’ disease is a potentially fatal form of pneumonia and everyone is susceptible to infection although the elderly have a higher susceptibility.

If you are responsible for a building, you will need to take the following steps to meet your legal duty in controlling the Legionella bacteria:

 

  • Appoint a competent person to advise you on Legionella management
  • Carry out a Legionella risk assessment
  • Remove dead legs from the water system and refurbish where necessary
  • Monitor results of water testing
  • Carry out water treatment where necessary
  • Keep records

 

More information can be found here:  http://www.hse.gov.uk/legionnaires/