Global public health and safety organization NSF International is partnering with Homeyer Consulting Services, Inc. to provide healthcare facilities with specialized water systems management services to control legionella and other waterborne pathogens.
The partnership will help hospitals and other healthcare facilities better manage their water systems, meet government requirements and protect patients from waterborne illnesses such as Legionnaires’ disease.
The collaboration combines NSF International’s expertise in scientific research, regulatory compliance and public health standards with Homeyer Consulting’s experience in the engineering and technical aspects of managing industrial and commercial water systems.
The partnership will support hospitals, long-term care facilities and other healthcare facilities in meeting a U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services requirement to reduce the risk of the potentially deadly legionella bacteria and other pathogens in their water systems. The federal mandate applies to more than 20,000 healthcare facilities.
Hospital water systems are complex, touching everything from massive cooling towers to tiny medical devices, and the partnership provides the healthcare industry with all-encompassing services to identify, control, monitor and verify that waterborne pathogen risks are being managed.
“The bottom line is that Legionnaires’ disease outbreaks are almost completely preventable,” said Christopher Boyd, general manager of NSF International’s Building Water Health Program in North America. “There is absolutely no question that we understand where the risks in water systems are and how to develop effective strategies to prevent outbreaks from occurring. By pairing a leading consulting firm for facility water management with a global organization that’s laser-focused on health and safety in hospitals and healthcare facilities, we can provide a comprehensive suite of services to guard against these outbreaks.”
NSF International, an independent organization founded in 1944, is developing the first standard to comprehensively address legionella and other waterborne pathogens, as well as chemical and physical hazards, in building water systems. The standard, NSF 444: Prevention of Injury and Disease Associated with Building Water Systems, is being developed in collaboration with more than 100 industry, academic and healthcare experts. The standard is expected to be finalized and published this year.