Recorded at AIHce EXP 2019
Water can act as a host to many microorganisms that may threaten the safety of patients, staff, and visitors in healthcare settings. Waterborne healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) may occur during the many uses of potable water (i.e. water suitable for drinking) in the healthcare environment. Healthcare facilities can have large complex water systems that promote growth of pathogenic organisms if not properly maintained. Water management programs are an important way to help reduce the risk of transmission of these organisms. Thus, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) require that hospitals and nursing homes have a water management program that is effective in limiting Legionella and other opportunistic pathogens (e.g., Pseudomonas aeruginosa, nontuberculous Mycobacteria, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, Klebsiella pneumonia, Acinetobacter baumannii, Serratia spp., Aspergillus fumigatus, and Fusarium oxysporum) in their facility. A healthcare water management program identifies both hazardous conditions and corrective actions that can minimize the growth and spread of waterborne pathogens. This session will focus on key elements of an effective water management plan. The hospital water system will be described in terms of upstream, midstream, and downstream. The risk of transmission based on water at the points of use within healthcare facilities will also be discussed. Outbreak investigations will be presented.
Bryan Christensen, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention