According to the Riverside Press Enterprise, James was admitted to an undisclosed hospital earlier this week to treat a urinary tract infection and sepsis.
Sepsis is a potentially deadly blood poisoning caused by a bacterial infection.
The 73-year-old blues singer is expected to remain in the hospital until the infections clear up.
James, who was hospitalized for similar illnesses in early 2010, has leukemia and dementia.
She is best known for the song "At Last."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.