15th case of Legionnaires' disease reported in Genesee County

Posted at 10:35 AM, Nov 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-22 10:35:31-05

The 15th case of Legionnaires’ disease in Genesee County this year has been reported through the Michigan Disease Surveillance System (MDSS) electronic database, which retains all reports of reportable diseases listed in the Public Health Code and Attendant Administrative Rules.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) identified the case after it was reported into MDSS by McLaren Hospital with a possible healthcare associated exposure. The referral indicates that the patient is a male resident of Genesee County. Since MDHHS is prohibited from fully investigating Legionella cases in Genesee County by a Protective Order, further information is not available

Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations, health care facilities should perform a full investigation for the source of legionella when there is one case of definite healthcare associated Legionnaires’ disease, or greater than or equal to two cases of possible healthcare associated Legionnaires’ disease identified within six months of each other.

On September 15, the Michigan Court of Appeals granted the Department’s request to review the Protective Orders as a result of MDHHS filing a Writ of Superintending Control. Although the Protective Orders are still in effect, the Department looks forward to getting this important public health issue resolved in an expedited manner.

MDHHS is alerting the public after being made aware of the fifteenth Legionella case in Genesee County through MDSS. Today, MDHHS also issued a Health Alert Network notification to advise the healthcare community in Genesee County of the ongoing need for vigilance and appropriate testing. Any questions or concerns should be referred to the local health department.