12 Dec 2008

Increase in cases of Legionnaires disease

11:07 am on 12 December 2008

A jump in the number of cases of Legionnaires' disease has prompted a warning about the dangers of potting mix.

The Ministry of Health says there were 20 reported cases in November, a significant increase on the seven cases reported last November.

It says most of those cases are likely to have been caused by people inhaling potting mix or compost.

The ministry reminds people they should always wear gloves and a mask when using the mixes.

Legionella bacteria can cause pneumonia and lung infections.