COVID-19, LEGIONNAIRES’, PNEUMONIA:
“’These are unprecedented times and never have so many buildings been closed for so long without any thought for bringing these buildings back into use, which if not facilitated correctly, could lead to a serious outbreak of Legionnaires disease just as the country ….recovers from COVID-19”, according to John Thompson, Chief Executive of The Association of Plumbing & Heating Contractors (APHC), a leading water safety organization.
Thompson added: “Landlords and employers have a legal duty to assess and control the risk of exposure to Legionella bacteria. Risk assessments, precautionary actions and remedial work can be implemented to protect against Legionnaires’ disease. However, we believe the vast majority of landlords and employers are unaware of their legal duty and of the actions that need to be taken.”
Researchers at Purdue University warn that the federal government does not have clear, step-by-step guidance on what building owners should do to keep people safe when they prepare to reopen. According to Caitlin Proctor, a researcher at Purdue; “Now that all of the buildings are closed…, we might have to start thinking about it because everyone will be exposed in every building all at the same time,” she said.
SIMILAR SYMPTOMS; DIFFERENT CAUSES
Legionnaires’ disease is a severe type of pneumonia caused by the Legionella bacterium. This disease can be serious if not treated immediately. Most people catch Legionnaires’ disease by inhaling the bacteria from water droplets dispersed through taps and showers.
Covid-19 is a virus that is transmitted person-to-person through nasal droplets, saliva or other body fluid. Without widely available specific and reliable testing to confirm the presence of the virus, Covid-19 has been misdiagnosed as Legionnaires’ disease.
Symptoms exhibited between patients diagnosed with Covid-19 and those with Legionnaires Disease are similar: high temperature, fever, chills, coughing, muscle pains, headache and diarrhea. Both diseases have caused hundreds of thousands of fatalities worldwide in recent years, particularly in older adults and those with compromised immune systems. Both have been misdiagnosed as Pneumonia, causing errors in prescribed treatments.
PROTECT YOUR WATER
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Biofilm that builds up inside the pipes of a potable water plumbing system is a perfect breeding ground for the chlorine resistant bacteria in municipal water. When water plumbing systems are not used, stagnant water compounds the growth of biofilm. Point-of-Use (POU) filtration can provide an immediate barrier before contaminated water makes contact with immunocompromised patients and others at higher risk of infection without the need for chemicals. POU filters also reduce waterborne endotoxins, fungi, protozoa and viruses. Diseases caused by waterborne pathogens include Legionnaires’ Disease, Pneumonia, Shigellosis, Dysentery, Typhoid Fever, Cholera. Protect your water: AquaMedix.
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