Legionnaires outbreak does not deter Guest House visitors - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Legionnaires outbreak does not deter Guest House visitors

(SOURCE: WMC Action News 5) (SOURCE: WMC Action News 5)
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -

The number of Legionnaires Disease cases is currently at nine and health officials believe that number could rise.

The disease outbreak at the Guest House at Graceland comes on the heels of one of the busiest times of the year for Graceland, but tourists don't seem too bothered by it. In fact, many weren't aware of the outbreak or the aquatics' center closure. 

“It's clean. The decor is awesome, the Elvis pictures everywhere are really great to see,” said Colleen Heeter, who is visiting from Kansas City with her husband, Joe.

The Heeters checked into the hotel the same day Shelby County Health Department announced the number of Legionnaires Diseases had jumped from six to nine. It was also the same day the pool reopened.

"They were kind of making a big deal that the pool was open," Joe said. "They had signs everywhere."

But, they didn't know until Thursday why those signs touting the re-opening of the pool were a big deal. When they did learn about the Legionnaires outbreak, they said it still wouldn't have changed their decision to stay at the Guest House at Graceland.

Collen, who happens to be a nurse, knows about the Legionella bacteria and how easy it is to protect yourself.

The bacteria spreads through a mist, rather than person to person, and its victims contract a type of pneumonia, which is easily treated with antibiotics.

"You guys wash your hands and stay away. It's kind of like any other disease," Colleen said.

Officials are still asking for those who experienced symptoms after staying at Guest House at Graceland on Elvis Presley Boulevard between May 15 and June 26 to call Shelby County Health Department.

WMC Action News 5's Jessica Holley reached out to Guest House at Graceland several times on Thursday for a comment or update, but her emails and phone calls were not returned. 

Copyright 2017 WMC Action News 5. All rights reserved. 

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