In the UK the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) consider Legionellosis (Legionnaires’ disease) to be a preventable disease through the application of good water safety management practices. These water management practices are clearly set out in the HSE’s Approved Code of Practice ACOP L8 and their Health & Safety Guidance HSG 274 documents, both of which deal with the control of Legionella and Legionnaires’ disease in the workplace.Read more: Can You Prevent Legionella or Control the Risks?
Following a spate of significant outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease across the USA health advocates there are now pushing for the implementation of tighter water safety regulations.
Health and safety regulations are put in place for good reason – to protect and preserve the health and wellbeing of people. This applies just as readily to minimising the risks associated with water contaminated with Legionella bacteria, and the potential for Legionnaires’ disease.
If you are a duty holder or the appointed responsible person dealing with the control of Legionnaires’ disease in the workplace, and in particular risk assessments for the control of Legionella bacteria, you need to be aware of the British Standard BS 8580. This document is an important code of practice titled ‘Water Quality – Risk Assessments for Legionella Control’ and deals with many of the quality issues that surround the implementation and delivery of legionella risk assessments.Read more: Guide to BS 8580 Risk Assessments for Legionella
Combating legionella and pseudomonas is a crucial part of managing, operating and maintaining any water system. Since hot and cold water systems are used extensively throughout hospitals, clinical surgeries and other healthcare facilities, it is a good idea to make use of all the help and information you can get if you have responsibility for dealing with the challenges such engineered water systems can present.Read more: HTM 04-01 Revised - Safe Water in Healthcare
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a gram-negative bacterium that is shaped like a rod and is commonly found in the environment around us. There are various strains of bacteria under the pseudomonas classification. However, Pseudomonas aeruginosa is typically more common than the other strains and it can cause infections in plants and animals, including humans.Read more: What is Pseudomonas Aeruginosa?
Legionnaires’ disease can be traced back to 1976, to a convention of the American Legion (a veterans association similar to the British Legion) in Philadelphia in America. While the reason for the convention was supposed to be a celebration of the 200th anniversary of America’s position as an independent nation, it would be remembered for entirely different reasons.Read more: History of Legionnaires Disease
The use of spa pools and hot tubs is growing rapidly as their popularity increases both in commercial and domestic environments. However, it's important to remember that poorly managed spas can create significant risks to the health and safety of those people using and operating them.Read more: HSG 282 Control of Legionella in Spa Pools & Hot Tubs
Before the notorious outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in Philadelphia, USA in 1976, which ultimately led to the discovery of the legionella bacterium, no one knew what caused the illness that led to the severe pneumonia-like infection that can cause death in the worst-case scenario.Read more: Recognising the Symptoms of Legionnaires Disease
In this post we look at the use of expert witnesses in cases involving man-made water systems, Legionella bacteria and Legionnaires’ disease.
Expert witnesses aren’t used in all court cases, but they can be extremely useful in cases where an additional level of expert knowledge is required. In some instances, the evidence they give can help laypeople involved understand the facts of the case in far more detail than would otherwise be possible.Read more: Using Expert Witnesses in Legionella Cases
A fresh case of Legionnaires’ disease was diagnosed in Fresno County, USA at the end of 2016, reports state. The health officer for the American county had alerted local hospitals of an increase in cases of the disease that occurred three months ago. Nursing homes, another type of facility where the Legionella bacteria have a potentially-greater chance of developing to cause increased risk, were also notified.Read more: Fresno County in America Reports Case of Legionnaires’ Disease
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