A Legionnaire's Outbreak Near Disneyland Has Now Infected 15 People

The Rio Hotel & Casino

The Rio Hotel & Casino

According to Orange County health officials, the individuals were infected after spending time in Anaheim or Disneyland between late August and October.

THE number of people struck down with deadly Legionnaires' disease in Anaheim, California has increased to 15 - with 11 cases linked to Disneyland. It can become a health concern when it grows and spreads in human-made water systems such as showers and faucets, cooling towers, decorative fountains and water features.

Last week, Disneyland closed two cooling towers which had elevated levels of the bacteria.

Hotel & Casino Oct. 19 2005 in Las Vegas
Hotel & Casino Oct. 19 2005 in Las Vegas

People can get Legionnaires' disease when they breathe in small droplets of water in the air that contain the bacteria.

Additional cases were reported by guests who had returned to their hometowns. The Los Angeles Times reports that two patients have died, but neither of these visited Disneyland. Yet health officials can not definitively point to the towers as the source of the disease and are therefore investigating neighboring areas as well. To date, the Health District has been able to confirm seven cases of Legionnaires disease associated with this investigation.

All 15 cases were reported to the Health Care Agency between September 27 and November 15 and the ages of those affected range from 52 to 94.

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