Cook County jail water systems checked for Legionnaires’

cook county jail

CHICAGO — Cook County health officials are checking water systems at the county jail as they look for the source of bacteria causing Legionnaires’ disease in one inmate.

Officials from the Cook County Health and Hospital Systems were at the jail Wednesday morning. The sheriff’s office announced Tuesday that a jail detainee, who had been hospitalized since July 6 with pneumonia-like symptoms, has tested positive for the disease.

The inmate had been in the jail since fall of 2015. No other detainees or staff on his living unit or division developed symptoms. The sheriff’s office says some detainees will be moved out of an abundance of caution.

Legionnaires’ disease is often linked to contaminated water systems, hot tubs or cooling systems — typically in large buildings such as hospitals and hotels.