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Legionella bacteria found at two Allegheny County nursing facilities

Ben Schmitt
| Friday, March 10, 2017, 3:57 p.m.
Legionella pneumophila
Legionella pneumophila

Legionella bacteria have been detected in water systems at two Kane Regional nursing facilities, prompting new restrictions, Allegheny County officials said Friday.

The announcement comes after detection of Legionella at the Kane center in McKeesport last year.

Each of the four Kane centers had a copper-silver ionization water treatment system installed after the finding in October, according to a news release.

Dennis Biondo, Kane's executive director, said the latest Legionella was found at Kane McKeesport and Kane Glen Hazel.

One unit at each facility will use bottled water, restrict showers and discontinue ice machine use until retests are negative. The restrictions affect 55 residents at each nursing home, county spokeswoman Amie Downs said.

Nobody is exhibiting symptoms of Legionnaires' disease, county officials said.

Legionella bacteria can lead to Legionnaires', a form of pneumonia that can be fatal to patients with compromised immune systems, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“The Kane Center directors are working closely with, and following the recommendations of, the Health Department,” the county said in a news release. “Additionally, the vendors that installed the water treatment systems and ice machine filters will be consulted to make any necessary adjustments.

The McKeesport nursing home houses 270 residents. The Glen Hazel home has about 200.

Kane also has facilities in Ross and Scott.

Ben Schmitt is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-320-7991 or

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