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Legionella Outbreak - It Can Happen Anywhere In The World

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Building owners need to understand the risk of Legionella and associated risk of liability. The spread of the bacteria in a building's water system can lead to an outbreak of Legionnaires' disease, a dangerous pneumonia type illness.

SAN ANTONIO - Rezul -- Unchecked Legionella growth in a building's water system not only pose serious health risks for occupants but also liability risk for building owners if a Legionnaires' disease outbreak occurs. In July 2019, the Sheraton in Atlanta GA had a Legionnaires' disease outbreak and found Legionella bacteria in several water sources in the hotel. As reported by GPB.org, the Sheraton is being sued by guests and the Sheraton filed lawsuits against insurance companies. More recently, a private care home company in the UK was fined for causing "harm and death" after a resident died of Legionnaires' disease. A report on morningstaronline.co.uk, states that Legionella was "found on taps and the shower." In November 2020, outbreaknewstoday.com reported 85 people in Portugal became ill including 9 people who died from a Legionella outbreak. An investigation is ongoing. To protect themselves from liability, property owners need to reduce the risk of Legionella growth to ensure the safety of people in their buildings.

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Insurance companies offer environmental risk insurance for a variety of threats, including Legionella bacteria. Building owners can mitigate risk by following a water management plan that includes regular testing of the building's water. Water sampling and testing is the only way to know that all other safety measures are working.

"When building owners work to reduce Legionella risk by testing the water, they need to consider all sources where Legionella may grow. Faucets and showers are obvious places to test but, as in the Sheraton's case, Legionella can also grow in cooling towers and decorative fountains," says Hyperion's Legionella testing expert Dr. John Kalns. The U.S. does not have a coordinated approach for testing requirements. Dr. Kalns states, "Other countries, such as the UK, are working towards testing mandates. The U.S. is not there yet in recommending regular Legionella water testing." According to InsuranceBusiness mag.com, a report from Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty calls out Legionella as one of the growing liability insurance exposures for companies. Building owners can take action to implement a regular sampling schedule in their water management plans to limit Legionella risk and liability related to harm caused by the bacteria.

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About Hyperion
Hyperion Biotechnology is an environmental microbiology laboratory specializing in Legionella water testing. Hyperion holds CDC Environmental Legionella Isolation Techniques Evaluation (CDC ELITE) and Environmental Microbiology Laboratory Accreditation Program (EMLAP) certifications. Hyperion also has expertise in biomedical research and development with discoveries in salivary biomarkers to objectively measure fatigue levels. Hyperion is a Woman-Owned, Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned small business. https://www.hyperionbiotechnology.com (https://hyperionbiotechnology.com/environmental-microbiology/)

Media Contact
J. Callan

Source: Hyperion Biotechnology, Inc.
Filed Under: Property

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