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BRIEF: 3 cases of Legionnaires' disease confirmed at Providence nursing home

Providence Journal - 9/20/2018

Sept. 20--PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Three cases of Legionnaires' disease have been confirmed at Summit Commons Rehabilitation and Health Care Center, in Providence, according to the Rhode Island Department of Health.

Legionnaires' disease is a severe form of pneumonia caused by inhaling a certain type of bacteria.

The three cases at Summit Commons were diagnosed between mid-August and early September, said Joseph Wendelken, spokesman for the Department of Health. The bacteria that caused these illnesses is localized and the wider public is not at risk, he said.

Because of health privacy laws, Wendelken said he could not comment on the conditions of the three patients.

Older people, smokers and those with chronic lung disease or other immune system deficiencies are more susceptible to Legionnaires' disease, he said.

Department of Health officials met with families on Thursday to answer questions at the rehab facility, he said.

Last year, there were about 50 cases of Legionnaires' disease across the state, Wendelken said.

-- mlist@providencejournal.com

(401) 277-7121

On Twitter: @madeleine_list

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(c)2018 The Providence Journal (Providence, R.I.)

Visit The Providence Journal (Providence, R.I.) at www.projo.com

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