Skip to Content

1 dead, 4 hospitalized following Legionnaires’ disease outbreak at senior home


Click here for updates on this story

    MULTNOMAH COUNTY, Oregon (KPTV) — Residents at a senior home in North Portland were urged to temporarily leave following an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease on Monday.

Multnomah County Health Department said four residents at Rosemont Court located at 597 North Dekum Street had been hospitalized, and one has died.

On Monday, health officials notified more than 100 people living in the building were notified of concerns about the water system after multiple people became ill with pneumonia.

Northwest Housing Alternatives, which owns Rosemont Court, is working with the health department to relocate residents while crews work to remove any remaining Legionnaires’ bacteria.

The bacteria is found naturally in freshwater but can cause health problems if it gets into a building’s water supply. Legionnaires’ disease is not known to spread from person-to-person, and most healthy people exposed to the disease do not get sick. For people who are at an increased risk, breathing in very small water droplets with the bacteria can cause severe pneumonia.

Health officials said Legionnaires’ disease outbreaks are rare in Multnomah County. The Communicable Disease Investigations Team identified the building’s water supply as the likely source by mid-afternoon on Jan. 4. Within hours the Multnomah County staff began preparing to voluntarily relocate residents and creating a plan with building managers to treat the water system, including shutting off the water.

On Monday, employees from Multnomah County Emergency Response Team began going door to door inside the building offering temporary housing at local motels, bottled water, handwashing stations, hand sanitizer and portable potties during the transition.

Twenty people chose to leave Monday night while others waited to temporarily relocate on Tuesday.

“This is a unique and concerning situation,” said Dr. Jennifer Vines, Multnomah County Health Officer, “and we are working with our partners as quickly as we can to determine if other properties or water sources are affected.”

People in the building with questions or symptoms can call the County at 503-988-3406.

Please note: This content carries a strict local market embargo. If you share the same market as the contributor of this article, you may not use it on any platform.

Article Topic Follows: National & World

Jump to comments ↓

CNN Newsource


KTVZ NewsChannel 21 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content