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Legionnaires’ outbreak at Ohio hospital sparks wrongful death lawsuits

An Ohio hospital has been sued for medical malpractice and wrongful death after an outbreak of legionnaires’ disease.When patients are admitted to the hospital for an illness or surgical procedure, they expect to leave the facility feeling better – not to be later readmitted for a serious illness that they contracted while admitted. Unfortunately for many patients across the country, hospital-borne infections and illnesses do occur. A recent outbreak of a severe type of pneumonia in an Ohio medical center left more than a dozen patients ill and one dead.

The outbreak of legionnaires’ disease at the brand-new facility, Mount Carmel Grove City, is believed to have infected at least 16 people, as of the middle of July 2019. Authorities believe the outbreak originated from bacteria in the facility’s hot water system, which was likely improperly disinfected. In an adjudication order sent by the Ohio Department of Health, hospital officials were instructed to take immediate action to halt the spread of the illness or stop admitting new patients.

Serious form of bacterial pneumonia often deadly in medical facilities

Legionnaires’ disease is caused by the legionella bacteria and is usually fatal to about 10% of people in the general population after diagnosis. However, one in four patients may die from the disease if it occurs in a hospital or nursing home. According to the Mayo Clinic, legionnaires’ disease is most dangerous to smokers, the elderly or those with compromised immune systems. Symptoms can include the following:

· Headache

· Cough and shortness of breath

· Muscle pain and chest pain

· Chills

· High fever

To date, there have been seven medical negligence lawsuits related to the outbreak filed against the Mount Carmel Health System. One is a wrongful death suit brought by the husband of the patient who died.

Mount Carmel subject to prior lawsuits after multiple deaths

This case is not the first time a Mount Carmel facility has been accused of negligence. Recently, a doctor employed at Mount Carmel West was charged with murder after 25 patients died from Fentanyl overdoses under his care. Numerous wrongful death lawsuits against the doctor and Mount Carmel were filed by relatives of the deceased for these incidents.

It is always terrible to lose a loved one to an accident or illness, but it is even more tragic when the death was due to hospital negligence or abuse. The law office of Colley Shroyer Abraham is handling this latest case involving legionnaires’ disease and is committed to helping the families involved find justice. Those whose lives have been impacted by medical negligence may wish to speak with an experienced Ohio medical malpractice attorney.