Legionnaires Disease

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Legionnaires' Disease: What You Need to Know

Legionnaires' disease is caused by a type of bacteria called Legionella. The bacteria got its name in 1976, when people at a Philadelphia convention of the American Legion suffered from an outbreak of the disease. Although this type of bacteria was around before 1976, more illness from Legionnaires' disease is being detected now.

Each year, between 8,000 and 18,000 people are hospitalized with Legionnaires' disease in the U.S. However, many infections are not diagnosed or reported, so this number may be higher. More illness is usually found in the summer and early fall, but it can happen any time of year.