New Brunswick health officials continue testing for source of legionnaires’ outbreak

MONCTON, N.B. — Health officials in New Brunswick say they are closing in on the source of a legionnaires’ disease outbreak in Moncton that has made seven people sick.

The outbreak was declared on Aug. 6 and sent six people two hospital, where two patients remain, including one in intensive care.

Regional medical officer of health Dr. Yves Leger says that while officials have yet to find the source of the infection, they suspect a contaminated cooling tower is the most likely cause.

Leger told reporters today 23 towers in the west of Moncton have been tested and while nine showed some low levels of bacteria, only two required cleaning and disinfection.

Legionnaires’ disease can cause fever, cough, shortness of breath, and aches and pains, and it can be fatal in roughly 10 to 15 per cent of cases.

Leger says he expects test results to come in next week to help officials identify the source of the outbreak.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 16, 2021.

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