Mendocino County Health & Human Services Agency
Healthy People, Healthy Communities
Stacey Cryer, Director
Date: August 7, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Public Health Hot Line for Legionairre’s Disease Available
Mendocino County Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) Public Health has set up 24/7 Hot Line to answer questions concerning Legionairre’s Disease. The number is 707-472-2650. A Public Health Nurse will be available to answer questions and concerns regarding Legionnairre’s Disease.
HHSA has been notified that 3 people were hospitalized with Legionnaires’ Disease in the Ukiah area; currently, 2 people have been discharged. Staff from HHSA Public Health Nursing, Environmental Health, along with the Mendocino County Public Health Officer, Dr. Craig McMillan and Deputy Public Health Officer, Dr. Charles Evans, have begun an investigation and are working to assist with mitigation, education and prevention. Staff are working with the property owner of the Discovery Inn located in Ukiah, CA to collect samples from the water systems which is one suspected source. The results have yet to be determined.
Legionnaires’ Disease is NOT spread from one person to another person. Legionnaires’ disease is caused by a type of bacteria called Legionella. The Legionella bacteria are found naturally in the environment, usually in water. People get Legionnaires’ disease when they breathe in a mist or vapor (small droplets of water in the air) containing the bacteria. One example might be from breathing in droplets sprayed from a hot tub that has not been properly cleaned and disinfected. Most people exposed to the bacteria do not become ill.
Legionnaires’ disease can have symptoms like many other forms of pneumonia, so it can be hard to diagnose at first. Signs of Legionnaires’ disease can include: cough, shortness of breath, high fever, muscle aches, headaches. These symptoms usually begin 2 to 14 days after being exposed to the bacteria.
If you feel you have been exposed to Legionella or are concerned about symptoms, please call 707-472-2650 for more information.
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