Legionnaires' disease outbreak investigation toolbox

Download Page

Legionella outbreak control team members


  • Senior consultant in disease control (for example in England and Wales: Consultant in Communicable Diseases Control)
  • Regional/national Legionella experts or other consultant epidemiologists/microbiologists with Legionella experience
  • Environmental microbiologist with expertise in detection and control of Legionella
  • Senior representative of local clinical diagnostic laboratory
  • Infection control nurse or national equivalent
  • Data manager to take responsibility for all aspects of data structure, storage, security and dissemination
  • Press or media spokesperson
  • Engineers for suspect premises
  • Environmental health officer or hygienist or national equivalent
  • Health and safety enforcement officer
  • Hospital/industrial/community link persons
  • Other relevant persons


One of the Outbreak Control Team (OCT) members should be made the chair of proceedings; their main responsibility is to manage the outbreak response (coordinate people, facilitate investigations, make effective communications and ensure timely delivery of agreed objectives) rather than be involved in the investigation itself.


Regular updates of factors such as case ascertainment, patient outcomes and environmental results must be conveyed to all core members of the outbreak control team.

Data logging and record keeping

The OCT should arrange for careful recording of decisions and processes undertaken during the investigation, and in some situations a member should be designated as chief logger with responsibility for note/record keeping. The outbreak control team should take into account all applicable legal issues with data protection and data sharing and review these regularly in preparation for future outbreak investigations.