73 San Quentin inmates with Legionnaires’ disease symptoms

FILE - This undated file image made available by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a large grouping of Legionella pneumophila bacteria (Legionnaires' disease). Legionnaires' disease has been reported in a handful of states in the summer of 2015, leading to multiple deaths and more than 100 illnesses. The unrelated cases are part of a typical pattern seen with a disease that tends to appear in warm weather and is mostly dangerous for people who are already sick or weakened. (Janice Haney Carr/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention via AP, File)

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – Officials say the number of inmates at San Quentin State Prison showing respiratory illness symptoms increased to 73.

State corrections department spokeswoman Dana Simas said Monday the 73 inmates are under observation for Legionnaires’ disease but have not been diagnosed. They are being treated at San Quentin’s on-site medical unit.

Prison officials have confirmed six San Quentin State Prison inmates are ill with the disease, whose symptoms include high fever, chills and a cough.

Simas says some services to inmates have been restored, including access to the law library and dental appointments.

She says inmates are still receiving boxed meals and taking showers in portable shower units to avoid exposure to steam or mist that could contain the Legionella bacteria.

Officials have yet to determine the source of the outbreak.

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