Flint Water Testing in the news

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Flint water switch led to most Legionnaires’ cases

Most of the more than 90 Legionnaires’ disease cases during the deadly 2014-15 outbreak in the Flint area were caused by changes in the city’s water supply — and the epidemic may have been more widespread than previously believed, according to two studies published Monday. “There was clearly a large proportion of cases that can be attributed to the switch in the water,” said Shawn McElmurry, an environmental engineering associate professor at Wayne State University who leads the research partnership. “While there may not have been a good enough epidemiological investigation at the time, and the data may not have been collected..., this makes it very clear that the increase in the Legionnaires’ cases is attributable to the change in water quality.” 
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WSU prof: State officials stalled Flint water tests

A Wayne State University professor tasked by Gov. Rick Snyder with helping investigate whether the Flint area Legionnaires’ outbreak was connected to the switch to the Flint River said on Friday state officials tried to stall his team so they didn’t find anything in the water system. Shawn McElmurry, an environmental engineering associate professor hired by the state, testified Friday in the preliminary hearing of Health and Human Services Director Nick Lyon that the group was being set up to fail. He also worried the budget limits for the 2016 study would hinder his sampling and research because he wouldn’t be able to hire as many staffers as necessary.
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Lead not likely the cause of increased cases of legionnaires’ disease in Flint but…

Researchers from Wayne State University are working to identify why the number of people with Legionnaires’ Disease spiked during the Flint water crisis. The study, in its second year, is expanding to include an examination of the disease in Wayne County. Legionnaires Disease is a form of pneumonia that often hits people over the age of 50 and those with underlying immune system problems. Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Director of Research at Wayne State University, Paul Kilgore, and Associate Professor of Environmental Engineering at Wayne State,  Shawn McElmurry, spoke with WDET’s Amy Miller. McElmurry says Legionella bacteria is readily found in the environment.