Inmate at Md. prison gets Legionnaires’ disease

HAGERSTOWN — Prison officials say an inmate at a western Maryland prison has been treated at a hospital for Legionnaires’ disease.

A spokesman for the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services says water is being tested at the Roxbury Correctional Institution for the bacterium that causes the disease. It grows in water, including air-conditioning ducts, storage tanks and rivers.

State prisons spokesman Mark Vernarelli tells The Herald-Mail of Hagerstown that it’s believed the inmate contracted the disease inside the prison. The inmate was treated at a hospital for Legionnaires’ pneumonia and is now at a prison infirmary. Vernarelli says no other inmates are known to have been infected.

Legionnaires’ bacteria were previously found in the water at Roxbury in 2006.

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