August, 2017, Madisonville - MMLI has developed capabilities to support healthcare facilities to meet the mandate for Legionella testing within their water management plan. In June of 2017, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced a mandate requiring all certified Medicare and Medicaid facilities to begin testing their potable water and have a water management plan that meets the requirements of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating & Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) industry standards. These standards are designed to reduce the risk of Legionella. Any facility that does not comply with the mandate will risk citation for non-compliance and would be in violation of the CMS Conditions of Participation.
Legionella pneumophila is the most common Legionella species in building water. It's name was the foundation of the Legionnaires' disease. This disease is a severe, often lethal, form of pneumonia. Each year it is estimated that 10,000 to 18,000 people are infected in the United States and is caused by the bacterium Legionella pneumophila.
Legionella is naturally found in freshwater environments, like lakes & streams. It becomes a health concern when it grows and spreads in our water systems. Some areas of potential contamination are:
- Showers and faucets
- Cooling towers (large air conditioning units)
- Spas and pools
- Hot water tanks & heaters
- Large plumbing systems