The Riverside County Department of Environmental Health recently announced it was investigating a cluster of Legionnaires' disease cases in Palm Springs, Palm Desert, and some surrounding communities. The outbreak includes at least 20 cases, including 14 hospitalizations and 2 deaths that occurred between last fall and early this year.
As part of the investigation, a number of pools and spas in the Palm Springs area were temporarily closed so health officials could test them for Legionella. The bacteria can be found naturally in the environment and in some man-made environments, typically in water. These man-made sources include cooling towers, potable water systems, hot tubs, hot water tanks, large plumbing systems, and decorative fountains.
“Legionella can be spread to humans if they inhale contaminated water droplets or mist, causing some vulnerable individuals to come down with Legionnaires' disease or Pontiac fever,” said Michael Chapman, Laboratory Manager of LA Testing's Huntington Beach facility. “Environmental testing for Legionella can help to pinpoint the source of an outbreak to prevent new cases of the disease. Routine environmental sampling for Legionella is also an effective way to validate the efficacy of a water management programs to confirm proactive efforts to mitigate Legionella exposure risks are effective.”
LA Testing, with multiple laboratories in California, offers testing services and specialized sampling supplies to detect Legionella and many other microbial pathogens from environmental samples. They have even sponsored an educational video about Legionella and monitoring building water systems that can be seen at: https://youtu.be/F_Ggg_uaL_s
About LA Testing
LA Testing is California's leading laboratory for indoor air quality testing of asbestos, mold, lead, VOCs, formaldehyde, soot, char, ash, and smoke damage, particulates, and other chemicals. In addition, LA Testing offers a full range of air sampling and investigative equipment to professionals and the public. LA Testing maintains an extensive list of accreditations including: AIHA-LAP, LLC (AIHA-LAP, LLC EMLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC IHLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC ELLAP), CDC ELITE, NVLAP, State of California, State of Hawaii Department of Health, and other states. LA Testing, along with the EMSL Analytical, Inc. network, has multiple laboratories throughout California including South Pasadena, Huntington Beach, San Leandro, San Diego, and Ontario.
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