Jun 25, 2019

Michigan Agencies Order Hospital to Solve Legionella Issues

Hospital denies claims and called the order unfounded

Michigan hospital, Legionella, Legionnaires

On June 12, two Michigan agencies warned McLaren Flint Hospital in Flint, Mich., to complete corrective actions to minimize future Legionella issues. According to The Detroit News, the “Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs issues the orders under the Michigan Public Health code to prevent the spread of disease.”

The hospital is denying these claims and calling the order unfounded. It "represents the state’s continuous efforts to shift blame for their bad decisions made five years ago onto our hospital," said Rosemary Plorin, a McLaren spokeswoman, to The Detroit News. She also added that McLaren is "exploring possible legal action" against the state.

Former Health and Human Services Director Nick Lyon and former Chief Medical Executive Dr. Eden Wells currently await trial related to a 2014 to 2015 Legionnaires’ disease outbreak in the Flint area. 

The hospital said the Legionnaires’ at the facility was from Legionella in the city’s water system. 

“The department has attempted to work with McLaren Flint to assure that all appropriate steps are being taken in a timely manner to protect the health, safety and welfare of patients, staff and visitors within the health facility,” said Robert Gordon, health and human services director for McLaren Flint Hospital in a statement to The Detroit News. “Prompt compliance with this order will minimize health risks for McLaren’s patients.”

A study funded mainly by the state health department estimated around 80% of Legionnaires’ was attributed to the change in water supply, according to The Detroit News. Health officials dispute the results and have hired an outside firm to complete an external review of the analysis.