More than 76 percent of Legionnaires’ disease cases acquired from Legionella exposure in health care facilities can be particularly harsh, including possible fatal risks to patients, according to a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The report’s findings – which were a part of the CDC’s monthly Vital Signs publication – are based upon exposure data from 20 states and New York City. The incorporation of a Water Management Plan will reduce the chance of heavy colonization, amplification and dissemination to people. With this in mind, ASHRAE developed ASHRAE Standard 188: Legionellosis: Risk Management for Building Water Systems to assist designers and building operators in developing a Water Management Plan. Based upon this standard, the CDC developed a toolkit entitled ‘Developing a Water Management Program to Reduce Legionella Growth and Spread in Buildings: A Practical Guide to Implementing Industry Standards’. The document – initially released in 2016 and updated on June 5, 2017 – provides a checklist for building owners and managers to help identify if a water management program is needed, examples to help identify where Legionella could grow and spread in a building and ways to reduce the risk of contamination.
For more information on Legionella, Legionnaires’ disease and the toolkit, visit www.cdc.gov/legionella