IU suspends water service after bacteria found in hospital’s water

(WISH Photo, file)
(WISH Photo, file)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Water at some IU Health facilities will only come from a bottle until further notice.

That’s because officials are still waiting to get test results back to determine if two patients who died from legionella last week contracted the bacteria from water while hospitalized.

The first patient who died may have arrived at the hospital with legionella. She had a compromised immune system and did not respond to treatment.

A second person died from the disease shortly after. Doctors say that patient came in to the hospital and later developed legionella.

During an investigation, the unusual organism was found in University Hospital’s water supply.

Hospital officials say they took steps to treat the water with heat and chemical disinfectants.

While experts feel the water is safe, they are taking additional precautions and have suspended water service at University Hospital in addition to the IU Health Simon Cancer Center and certain ambulatory clinics.

The hospital will provide bottled water for drinking and showering needs to patients, guests and staff. It is unknown how long the water supply will be suspended.

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