When traveling overseas many travelers alert themselves with diseases from insects, stomach viruses or diarrhea. Foreign travelers should also be vigilant on the potential exposure to legionnaires disease.
Two Legionnaires’ Disease Victims While Traveling Abroad
The death of a Cambridge, England pensioner was confirmed to be from Legionnaires’ disease by the local coroner. Ray Jones was on holiday in Alicante, Spain when he purportedly contracted the disease. The coroner was convinced, and reported the death as the result of a faulty water system at the hotel that Jones was staying in 2012. You can read more about Mr. Jones’ story here. The other victim from Middlesbrough, England was not specifically identified, but was also infected during foreign travel.
Two recent articles of Englishmen exposed to Legionella illustrate some issues of travel concern. One is that legionella and legionnaires disease knows no boundaries. One victim was an elderly retiree on holiday who died 20 days after arriving in Spain and suffering from symptoms of the flu. As a previous post regarding elderly indicated, typical symptoms of the flu in an older person may actually be that of legionnaires. The lack of medical attention to those of the older generation can allow fatal illnesses like legionnaires to go undetected, and untreated. As one of the victim’s daughters explained, “It needs to be taken into consideration that people of my father’s generation do not make trouble, they’re not pushy – they sit and suffer.”
Lack of Proper Reporting and Notification
The interesting other facts that appear in these cases are that one of the hotels had a previous exposure to legionella. However, the lack of proper reporting did not provide the information to the public on the previous outbreak. The other unknown is why it apparently took an extremely long time to render the opinion on the cause of the elderly gentleman’s death. When an outbreak occurs there should be proper notification to the public in general, and to those that may have been directly exposed. Without the appropriate notice, persons who become infected, or possibly die, may never know the actual cause of their illness or the loved one’s passing.
Speak to an Attorney
If you or a loved one has contracted Legionnaires’ disease, and would like to speak to attorney, please contact me. I am happy to provide a no cost consultation.