Audit finds legionella in almost half of Qld health facilities

An audit of every tap, shower and water system was conducted at the state's 257 public and private facilities following an outbreak of legionnaires’ disease in Brisbane earlier this year.

It revealed legionella bacteria was present at 105 facilities, including 60 positive test results returned from critical care areas. 

The outbreak in June saw the Wesley Hospital – one of the city’s largest private hospitals – declare a brief moratorium on new admissions, during which a number of scheduled surgeries were cancelled after the bacteria was found in the facility’s hot water system.

The hospital wrote to GPs offering advice on assessing patients who had been treated at the facility, should they present with concerns or symptoms.

At the time of the audit’s launch, Mr Springborg warned that, based on the advice of Queensland chief health officer Dr Jeannette Young, many “hospitals may return