3 Dec, 2023 @ 16:35
1 min read

Health experts at a loss on what is causing Legionnaire’s disease cases in Gibraltar

Gib Poor Homes

AUTHORITIES are trying to discover the source of a Legionnaire’s disease cases in Gibraltar that saw at least four people take ill.

The Gibraltar Health Authority reported that two victims had already recovered from Legionnaire’s, with two others still getting treatment.

Bacteria that usually grows in stagnant water and poorly kept water systems must then become airborne to create Legionnaire’s, leading to possible pneumonia among victims.

A Strategic Coordinating Group met Friday to monitor the situation after health experts found no links between the cases.

The Environmental Agency is now working with the Director of Public Health to discover what caused the infection.

They have still not found any connection between the facilities, buildings or locations used by its four victims.

As it is impossible to catch Legionnaire’s Disease from another person, public health chiefs have asked people to take extra precautions for the time being.

“Ensuring that water systems in homes and businesses are well maintained is really important to prevent Legionnaire’s disease,” Director of Public Health Dr Helen Carter said.

“You can do this simply by running your taps and showers for a few minutes every week.”

She recommended people to run tap ‘for two minutes’ if they were not turned on for more than seven days.

“The other potential source we are concerned about is car screen windscreen wash,” Carter continued.

“We would advise using specialist car screen fluid rather than tap water as bacteria can multiply in tap water.”

She advised people suffering of ‘worsening shortness of breath’ to call 111 for a doctor’s opinion.

A GBC report highlighted the delapidated state of some pre-war homes in the old town of Gibraltar.


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