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The importance of preventing Legionnaires’ disease

Legionnaires’ disease is a lung infection (pneumonia) which is contracted by breathing in water droplets containing Legionella bacteria; there are around 300-400 cases – some of which are fatal – in the UK each year. Awareness around prevention of water-borne diseases and the importance of this issue has increased. Trovex have found an innovative solution to assist maintenance teams in the prevention of water-borne diseases, particularly Legionella.

 

How was legionellas first discovered?

Legionnaires’ disease got its name after 234 people got ill and 34 died of the disease after attending a convention of the American Legion in 1976. Since then, there have been many suspected and confirmed cases every year. The biggest outbreak occurred in Spain in July 2001 with more than 800 suspected cases, 499 confirmed cases and 6 deaths.

What are the causes?

Legionella bacteria thrive in water temperatures between 25˚c and 45˚c, particularly if the water is stagnant. The bacteria are killed in temperatures of 60˚c. The disease can be caught from piped water, especially where there are long runs of pipe work and particularly if systems are not flushed regularly. Challenges arise in hospitals and healthcare buildings where they are looking after patients that are weak and ill in health, and its these patients that are very vulnerable to contracting the disease.

The facts

Recently, Public Health England released their latest report which showed that there were 70 confirmed cases of Legionella infection with onset in August 2018. And since January, there have been 276 confirmed cases. What’s more, it is thought that in every 2 in 10 cases of pneumonia that occur in previously well people are due to Legionella bacteria. The most shocking statistic is that there is a 1 in 10 chance of death when this disease is contracted.

Why ThermCheck?

As we mentioned, people with poor health are more likely to catch the disease due to their vulnerability. This therefore, is a reason why it is vital that hospitals have prevention and control measures in place to contain the risk of Legionella contraction. This is where ThermCheck comes into play. ThermCheck is integrated during manufacture into Hygipods and maintains the flush wrap on the Hygipod and therefore helps with infection control.

The device makes the poorly, or non-routinely carried out activity, of checking pipes and eliminates the need for paper records. As the thermocouples are attached directly onto the pipes, it ensures accuracy of temperature measurement and in turn helps prevention of Legionnaires. The mechanism records the temperature at the correct place in the pipe where these dangerous bacteria are most likely to form.

Unlike other diseases such as cancer or Alzheimer’s, Legionnaires’ disease can be prevented. It is vital that this disease is controlled. We have over twenty years of experience in providing hygienic surfaces and environments.

Contact us today to discuss how we can integrate ThermCheck into your next project.
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