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31 August 2018 Devon health care centre closed after deadly bacteria discovered in taps

posted 3 Sept 2018, 00:14 by Ian Clarenbone

A Devon health care centre has been closed after Legionella bacteria was discovered in taps. Further tests are being carried out at Paignton Health and Wellbeing Centre in the old Paignton hospital building in Church Street.

The local NHS advised anyone in a high-risk group who develops a cough or fever above 38C after visiting the centre to contract their GP.

A statement from the Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust said it was carrying out more testing and remedial work. It said in a statement: “Although it is normal for Legionella bacteria to be present in older buildings and any risk to people in outpatient settings is minimal, we have decided as a precaution to cancel clinics at Paignton Health and Wellbeing Centre while we carry out further testing and remedial works. Our swift actions will prevent the possibility of infection; however, anyone who has a compromised immune system or is pregnant and develops a cough/fever above 38 degrees after a recent clinic attendance at Paignton Health and Wellbeing Centre should seek advice from their GP, as there is a urine test for Legionella, performed at Torbay hospital and Legionella can be treated with antibiotics.”

Dr Selina Hoque, Director of Infection Prevention and Control at the trust, said: “We carry out regular testing of all our estate buildings, and are closing Paignton Health and Wellbeing Centre as a precautionary measure to minimise the risk to our staff and patients. We hope to re-open Paignton Health and Wellbeing Centre on Wednesday 5 September once we have checked that decontamination of the building has been completed. We apologise for any inconvenience caused by the short notice cancellations, but protecting people’s health and safety is our first consideration. We will reschedule cancelled clinics as soon as possible, and in the meantime, anyone who has any queries about their appointment should contact the number given on their clinic letter.”

NHS England has been informed of the incident.