Health officials: Legionnaire’s disease patient toll at 116


ASHEVILLE, NC (AP) — Health officials in North Carolina say 116 people have been diagnosed with Legionnaire’s disease since an outbreak was reported in September.

The Asheville Citizen Times reports the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services released the figures on Wednesday, adding that there was one death. The department also says 65% of those diagnosed had to be hospitalized. DHHS expects the number of confirmed cases to continue to climb as diagnostic tests are processed.

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Health officials aren’t sure if the illness originated from last month’s Mountain State Fair.

Legionnaires’ disease is a bacterial pneumonia that develops when someone breathes in mist or water that contains the bacteria into their lungs.