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The Villages
Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Two confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ Disease linked to hot tub at Water Oak

Two confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ Disease have been linked to a hot tub at Water Oak.

Water Oak is located off U.S. Hwy. 27/441 in Lady Lake.

The Florida Department of Health in Lake County is conducting an investigation of the two laboratory-confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ Disease traced to the hot tub at the club house at the 55+ community of about 1,100 manufactured homes in Lady Lake.

The Department of Health wants to know if anyone else may have become ill.

Anyone who may have visited the Water Oak clubhouse hot tub since Feb. 1 who may have experienced symptoms or have been diagnosed with Legionnaires’ Disease is encouraged to call the Department of Health at (352) 771-5573.

Legionnaires’ Disease can have symptoms like many other forms of pneumonia, so it can be difficult to diagnose. Symptoms of the disease can include cough, high fever, shortness of breath, muscle aches and headaches. The symptoms usually begin two to 14 days after exposure to bacteria. Most healthy people who contract Legionnaires’ Disease recover from the infection and most cases can be treated successfully with antibiotics, according to the Department of Health.

Legionnaires’  Disease is caused by the Legionella bacteria that exists naturally in the environment. It can also be found in man-made water systems such as hot tubs, spas, cooling towers, hot water tanks, large plumbing systems or parts of the air-conditioning systems of large buildings.

Legionnaires’  Disease cannot be spread person to person, according to the Department of Health.

The first recognized cases of Legionnaires’ disease occurred in 1976 in Philadelphia. Among more than 2,000 attendees of an American Legion convention held at the Bellevue-Stratford Hotel, 182 attendees contracted the disease and 29 of them died.

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