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Legionnaires’ Outbreak Claims Seven Lives in Poland

Seven individuals in the southeastern Polish city of Rzeszow have tragically lost their lives, while 76 others have been affected by an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease, as announced by local authorities on Friday.

Krzysztof Saczka, the head of the Polish health inspection service, provided details, stating that the victims include four men and three women. Legionnaires’ disease is caused by bacteria that can proliferate in water and air-conditioning systems. It spreads via contaminated droplets and often leads to symptoms such as fever and pneumonia, particularly in individuals with compromised immune systems. It’s important to note that it is not directly transmissible from person to person.

The individuals who succumbed to the disease were between the ages of 63 and 95, and they had already battled cancer, cardiac issues, or other chronic illnesses, as per Saczka.

The origin of this outbreak remains unclear, and the results of initial water sample tests are not anticipated until Monday. In the meantime, local authorities in Rzeszow, a city with a population of approximately 200,000, have intensified disinfection procedures.

It’s worth mentioning that Legionnaires’ disease was named after its first documented outbreak in 1976 at a hotel in Philadelphia, where a conference of the American Legion military veterans’ association was taking place. That outbreak affected over 220 people, resulting in 34 fatalities.

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