Healthy Indoors Magazine - USA Edition

HI June 2014

Healthy Indoors Magazine

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Page 44 of 65

Legionella Continued from previous page Healthy Indoors 45 Conclusions Legionnaires' Disease is a preventable building related illness that infects thousands of Ameri- cans every year, resulting in many unnecessary deaths. The system established by the nation's public health agencies is far from adequate, misses most cases, investigates only a small percentage of them, and by its own metrics is failing. With as estimated 250% rise in inci- dence rates since 2000 and no signs of abating, a different approach must be considered. Numerous factors are believed to increase the risk of Legionnaires' Disease. Combined with the rising number of susceptible people in our communities we should anticipate a surge in outbreaks and sporadic cases acquired in both healthcare facilities and the community at large. The collision of contributing environmental factors with increasing risks of Legionnaires' disease should spur efforts to shift from surveil- lance and reactionary responses to lethal out- breaks to proactive preventive programs run by competent professionals. Dr. David Krause, the national practice leader for building health sciences at Geosyntec Consultants, holds a Doctorate in Environmental and Occu- pational Health and Masters of Science in Public Health from the University of South Florida. He has 20 years of experience in environmental science and public health, focusing in the areas of toxicol- ogy, occupational health, industrial hygiene, indoor air quality, and chemical emission testing. Prior to joining Geosyntec, Dr. Krause served as the State Toxicologist for the Florida Department of Health and led efforts to investigate potential public health risks associated with corrosive Chinese drywall and the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. He coauthored the 2009 Florida DOH Guidelines for the Surveil- lance, Investigation, and Control of Legionnaires' Disease in Florida. David is a Certified Industrial Hygienist with expertise in combustion products, flame retardants, irritant chemical exposures, indoor air quality, Legionnaires disease, and mold. Share YOUR comments on our LinkedIn discussion by clicking the button below! Or, comment on our IAQnet Facebook Page by clicking the button below! Despite challenges of doing this with the sam- pling and measurement methods currently available we should not simply abandon efforts to prevent illness and disease associated with Legionella. By moving away from the existing CDC reactionary approach and implementing a proactive approach based upon core principles of Industrial Hygiene we can begin lowering the number of people who contract Legionnaires' disease and are made ill or die every year.

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