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New case of Legionnaires' disease with ties to Sheraton hotel discovered

This is the 11th confirmed case.

ATLANTA — The Georgia Department of Health announced an 11th case of Legionnaires’ disease by an individual who recently stayed at or visited the Sheraton Atlanta.

This is the fifth new case health officials have confirmed this week.

The hotel closed on July 15, and officials said it would remain closed through at least Aug. 11 as they continue testing and trying to find the source. Those who fell ill visited between late June and early July, the health department said.

Hotel management said as soon as they learned of the possible Legionella exposure, the hotel "retained outside environmental consultants and is presently collecting samples at the hotel."

Samples are being collected from various areas of the hotel.

The hotel said they will assist guests who have upcoming reservations find lodging at nearby hotels. Guests whose reservations have been canceled will receive a full refund.

RELATED: What is Legionnaires' disease

Legionnaires' disease is a serious type of pneumonia caused by bacteria known as legionella.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Legionnaires' disease can cause pneumonia-like symptoms including cough, shortness of breath, muscle aches, headache and fever. 

People can catch the disease by inhaling the bacteria in a public place. It can't be passed by skin from person to person.

While Legionnaires' disease is serious, it can be treated with antibiotics. Most people who get sick need hospitalization, but make a full recovery.

The health department said there have been no reported deaths due to Legionnaires’ disease among hotel guests.

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Why Sheraton Atlanta took three days to close after Legionnaires' disease confirmed