Hygiene and the prevention of water-related infections

Controlling waterborne health risks

Water is an essential element for Healthcare Facilities and/or Public Buildings to function, but it represents a potential source of infection for the most vulnerable patients and/or people, with often very serious and very visible consequences.

Preventing the health risks associated with waterborne microorganisms (such as Legionella, Pseudomonas or other emerging pathogens) in the hot water system, and especially for those departments caring for immunocompromised and vulnerable patients, is a major concern for the duty holders of these buildings.

Controlling the water quality in public buildings is based on a comprehensive approach to risk management. A thorough knowledge of the water distribution network, and the ability to identify the causes of deterioration of the microbiological quality of water, are essential to implementing this approach. Both ageing water systems and new systems are implicated in the need to manage the health risk.