KINGSTON, N.Y., Jan. 14 (UPI) -- Health inspectors swept a county-run nursing home near New York City Thursday after two residents became infected with Legionnaires' disease and one died.
The inspectors traced all water pipes at the Golden Hill Nursing Home in Kingston, N.Y., looking for the source, Ulster County Health Director La Mar Hasbrouck said.
They also checked a pumping station for that water on the nursing home property, he told the Daily Freeman of Kingston.
County and state health authorities will develop a disinfection plan after the source is identified, Hasbrouck told the (Middletown, N.Y.) Times Herald-Record.
Golden Hill staff will also monitor residents for early signs of respiratory illness that might indicate Legionnaires' disease, caused by a type of bacteria called Legionella.
The disease -- which gets its name from a July 1976 outbreak at an American Legion convention in a Philadelphia hotel that resulted in 34 deaths -- is not spread from person to person. Most people get it from inhaling the bacteria when they breathe contaminated mist or vapor.
The bacteria take 10-14 days to incubate inside the human body.
Legionnaires' cases are often traced to building ventilation systems, but an assistant to Ulster County Executive Mike Hein told the Freeman Golden Hill didn't have the kind of system that emits such vapors.
The disease, which often produces pneumonia, mostly affects people over age 65.
The patient who died, an 88-year-old woman, had an underlying medical condition, Hasbrouck told the Mid-Hudson News Network. The other person, a 91-year-old woman, was successfully treated at a hospital and released.