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Legionnaires' outbreak death toll increases to five

The most recent victim is a 76-year-old woman who was hospitalised at HSFX, according to the DGS, which said it regretted the death that was a result of the Legionnaires' disease outbreak at the Lisbon hospital.

"Within the scope of this outbreak, and so far, there have been five deaths," said the statement signed by the Director General of Health, Graça Freitas.

The DGS noted that "epidemiological indications point to a slowing and resolution of the outbreak."

So far, nine patients have already been discharged after being infected with Legionnaire's disease, the DGS reported.

The latest DGS figures point to 46 confirmed cases of Legionnaires' since 31 October 31, 27 (59%) female and 33 (72%) aged 70 or over.

Legionella is the bacterium responsible for Legionnaires' Disease, a form of severe pneumonia that usually begins with dry cough, fever, chills, headache, muscle aches and difficulty breathing. There may also be symptoms of abdominal pain and diarrhoea. The incubation period if five to six days after infection, and may be up to 10 days.

The infection can be contracted by air (respiratory), through the inhalation of water droplets or by aspiration of contaminated water. Although severe, the infection has effective treatment.

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