UW patient diagnosed with Legionnaires’ Disease dies, additional patient identified

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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - One of the patients who was diagnosed with Legionnaires' Disease has died at UW Hospital, UW Health said Thursday.

The hospital is also treating an additional patient for the disease.

On Wednesday, the hospital revealed four people developed the disease. Those patients ranged in age from 45 to 80 years old.

On Thursday morning, UW hospital diagnosed an additional patient.

Lisa Brunette, a spokesperson with the UW Health, said the hospital is taking measures to address a suspected risk associated with the hospital’s hot-water system.

On Wednesday afternoon, the hospital will implement a “hypercholoration” process to flush all hot-water lines in the building to eliminate any Legionella bacteria.

Brunette said the University Hospital uses a water treatment system designed to keep levels low, but a recent adjustment to that system may have compromised its function.

Tests on some units within the hospital recently have shown elevated levels. Legionnaires’ is caused by bacteria that are typically present at low concentrations in tap water.

On Thursday night two of the original patients diagnosed with Legionnaires‘ Disease are still in the hospital.

All patients with the disease are being treated with antibiotics.

There have been no cases of Legionella acquired at University Hospital in 23 years.

American Family Children’s Hospital is not affected.

The Wisconsin state Division of Public Health has also been notified.