SEVERE WX : Flash Flood Watch - Flood Warning View Alerts

Legionella Bacteria Found In VA Hospital Water Fountains

The water fountains at the Pettis VA Medical Center in Loma Linda are out of service because evidence of Legionella, ...

Posted: Jun 16, 2018 2:32 AM
Updated: Jun 16, 2018 2:32 AM

The water fountains at the Pettis VA Medical Center in Loma Linda are out of service because evidence of Legionella, the bacteria that can cause Legionnaire's disease, was found during the most recent quarterly water safety tests.

Nancy Darling, whose husband gets treated at the VA, isn't worried.

"I think it's a minor problem. I really do. They're on top of it," said Darling.

Staff at the VA insist there is no Legionella outbreak. That they shut off water to all the areas that tested positive and are mitigating the issue. They say only one patient room was impacted and no patients were exposed.

But according to The San Bernardino Sun, a group of physicians and nurses filed a federal whistleblower complaint just a few months ago, saying not enough was being done to protect employees and patients from exposure to Legionella.

"It's sad. It's scary. Wish we could do more," said Vanessa Ceja, ex-wife of a patient.

No employees a the facility would talk on camera, but several admitted off-camera that they weren't told about the latest water tests. They didn't know if any long term efforts were under way to prevent future issues with the water, but say the facility is probably due for some upgrades.

"Most likely because the hospital is old. It's like Redlands Hospital. It's old. It needs to be upgraded," said Darling.

Everyone CBSLA's Tina Patel talked to said our veterans deserve better.

"It's just kind of absurd how we don't put enough of our tax dollars to the facility," said Ceja.

The VA wouldn't directly address concerns brought up in the federal complaint. But they did say they're constantly educating staff members about the risks of Legionella and how to prevent outbreaks.

Article Comments

West Lafayette
Overcast
69° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 69°
Kokomo
Overcast
68° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 68°
Rensselaer
Overcast
61° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 61°
Fowler
Overcast
61° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 61°
Williamsport
Overcast
64° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 64°
Crawfordsville
Overcast
71° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 71°
Frankfort
Overcast
71° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 71°
Delphi
Overcast
68° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 68°
Monticello
Overcast
68° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 68°
Logansport
Overcast
66° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 66°
Flash Flood Watch & risk of isolated severe weather in this forecast.
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Community Events