Legionnaires may have killed 5 at Pittsburgh VA

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Federal health officials now say five people may have died from Legionnaires disease at Pittsburgh-area VA hospitals over the last two years, not the one death previously reported.

U.S. Rep. Tim Murphy, R-Pa., says that information at a hearing Tuesday of the House Veterans Affairs Committee revealed major breakdowns at the VA hospitals. Murphy says that raises new questions about whether the outbreak could have been prevented.

U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle, D-Pa., had also pushed for the hearing.

The VA says the hospital has had 29 Legionnaires' cases since January 2011, including the five announced last November. Eight more cases were traced to bacteria in the hospitals water.

The hospital's water treatment process has since been revamped.

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