Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

Rauner vows not to close Quincy veterans home after Legionnaires' outbreak

Rauner vows not to close Quincy veterans home after Legionnaires' outbreak

"Gov. Bruce Rauner showered and drank the water at the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy for the last week during his stay at the facility where 13 people have died of Legionnaires" disease since 2015.

In a statement, Dr. Shah says, "I stand behind IDPH's response at the Veterans' Home in Quincy and the immediate actions we took to protect the health and safety of veterans and staff".

During a joint House and Senate veterans affairs committee hearing Tuesday in Chicago, lawmakers asked veterans affairs and public health officials about what is being done to deal with a Legionnaires' outbreak that began in 2015. He says there were about 300 cases in IL past year.

A Republican senator says the director of the Illinois Department of Public Health should resign for a six-day delay in publicizing a Legionnaires' disease outbreak at the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy. It doesn't spread from person to person; rather, it is born and spread through mist or water. "On Aug. 27, we were sure". The hearing gets underway at 10 a.m. Tuesday.

Erica Jeffries, director of the state Department of Veterans Affairs, stressed that crews have overhauled the facility's water handling system and can now test the water more quickly - specifically for legionella bacteria. Residents' temperature is taken every four hours to check for infections.

"It is increased surveillance", Jeffries said.

"Let's get to work and give our veterans the service and care they deserve". "I'm impressed. I might even vote for him", Jardine said.

Others were more pointed with their criticism.

As the hearing was underway, Rauner was in the midst of an extended stay at the Quincy home in what his team has described as an attempt to learn more about the problem. Many things are new since 2016, a year after the first outbreak. He's expected to leave the home Wednesday and speak to reporters, a spokeswoman said.

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Shah says that moving vulnerable, elderly populations can cause "transfer trauma"-one of the reasons that residents were not promptly moved out of the Quincy home".

Legionnaires' is a respiratory virus that is contracted by breathing in water vapor that may contain the bacteria.

In 2015, 12 veterans died.

Last week, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a report with recommendations for minimizing the risk of new cases at the 132-year-old home but warned that the possibility of future cases "cannot be eliminated". "But it's because we care so much". "I know we don't want to move people out of their homes".

"First I want response from you about the six-day delay and then. what happened between August 21 and August 27 of 2015", McSweeney said.

"Because we are now looking for it, we are going to continue to find it", she said.

State Sen. Tony Munoz, D-Chicago, also supported a capital bill for a new or renovated facility.

With frequent guidance from the CDC, the new water treatment system manager, Phigenics, implemented a new, advanced treatment system and walked us through how the technology removes all contamination and the legionella bacteria.

"This is an issue especially with Legionella, because of the persistence of Legionella that we have worked with at a number of sites over multiple years investigating cases", Posner said.

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