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Loyalton resident has Legionella

January 09, 2007|by KAREN HANNA

A resident of Loyalton of Hagerstown was found to have Legionella, according to a note taped to a door at the assisted-living facility late Monday.

Staff members at the facility near Hagerstown Community College said they could not comment about the note, and one woman directed questions about the case to an administrator who is scheduled to work today.

Legionella is the bacteria that causes Legionnaires' disease, a severe pneumonia that causes 8,000 to 18,000 hospitalizations a year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

As many as 5 percent to 30 percent of people with the disease can die from it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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The bacteria got its name in 1976, when many people at an American Legion convention in Philadelphia fell ill.

The bacteria usually are found in water, and they thrive in areas such as hot tubs, cooling towers and parts of air-conditioning systems, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The note at Loyalton contained precautions about using water.

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