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Five People Died Due to Legionnaires’ Disease at a Manhattan Nursing Home

EMSL provides multiple analyses to help detect the presence of legionella.

Manhattan, NY – WEBWIRE

Over the summer, five people died from Legionnaires’ disease at a New York City nursing home. The nursing home had been cited on multiple occasions for improper maintenance of their cooling tower. This outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease is the worst since 2015 when cooling towers were blamed for the cause of 16 deaths.

Legionnaires’ disease can spread through inhaling water vapor containing legionella bacteria. Legionella grows in wet environments including hot tubs, fountains, and cooling towers. While it is rare to hear about deaths in conjunction with Legionnaires’ disease, there is a higher risk for older individuals, such in this case with a nursing home.

“Proactive testing can help prevent outbreaks of this potentially fatal disease or pinpoint the source of an outbreak if one has already occurred,” said Joseph Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Testing is the only way to know for sure if Legionella is present in a cooling tower or other source. At EMSL, we offer traditional culturing methods and advanced Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) and DNA sequencing methods. PCR tests are an excellent method for rapid results, but they do not indicate whether the bacteria are alive or not. Therefore, traditional culturing methods remain the gold standard, although the two testing methods are often used together. We offer all the sampling supplies necessary and have 18 laboratories that have received the CDC’s Environmental Legionella Isolation Techniques Evaluation (ELITE) Certificate of Proficiency.”

EMSL also offers a complimentary Legionella Pocket Guide. It provides an overview of Legionella, discusses sampling techniques, ways to test for it in the laboratory, and emergency remediation. To request a copy, please visit:

To learn more about Legionella or other microbial testing services, please visit or, email or call (800) 220-3675.

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.

EMSL Analytical is one of the leading testing laboratories throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella, USP 797, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOC’s, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products, and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA-LAP, LLC (AIHA-LAP, LLC EMLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC IHLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP, and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at for a complete listing of accreditations. In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.

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