Two new Legionella cases in Netherlands

10th July 2006, Comments 0 comments

UPDATE 11 July 2006, AMSTERDAM — Two new cases of Legionella have been detected in the Netherlands.

UPDATE 11 July 2006

AMSTERDAM — Two new cases of Legionella have been detected in the Netherlands.

The latest cases are in North Holland Province but no further details were given about their precise location. Health officials believe they are linked to 17 cases in Amsterdam, which is also in North Holland.

One person has died in Amsterdam as a result of the bacteria that can cause Legionnaires disease.

Amsterdam's health service GGD is trying to establish the source or sources of the infection. But a spokesperson said looking after patients was the main priority. "It is important that no more people get infected and that everyone stays alert."

The health service on Monday that 17 cases in Amsterdam was an "unusually high number of patients". They come from different locations across the Dutch capital and there is no clear link between the cases. Hospitals and family doctors have been warned to watch out for new cases, both in Amsterdam or in the rest of the Netherlands.

Officials say the first three cases were confirmed on Thursday. It is believed the first person became ill sometime between 29 June and 7 July.

Infection occurs after a person has inhaled mists that come from a water source contaminated with Legionella.

Potential sources of contaminated water include cooling towers, air conditioning systems and domestic hot water systems. Freshwater ponds and creeks are also potential sources of Legionella.

The condition cannot be transferred from person to person and drinking water does not pose a risk.

Legionnaires can be successfully treated with antibiotics but the risk of death in the most serious cases can range from 5 to 25 percent. The quicker the administration of antibiotics, the lower the chance an infection will be fatal. 

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]

Subject: Dutch news

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