Last March, it was confirmed that four men hospitalised in Sydney have Legionnaire’s disease. The news reports alarmed locals as it was also revealed that these men might have gotten infected at the Sydney Town Hall — a public venue that many visit. The town hall’s air conditioning system is said to be the breeding spot of the naturally occurring Legionella bacteria. The four men infected displayed pneumonia-like symptoms and they are being attended to by pulmonary specialists.
Sydney locals don’t really have to worry much about the disease, as it is curable. However, Legionnaires’ disease can still prove fatal especially among the elderly and those who already have respiratory issues or are immunosuppressed. Medical experts say that instead of being excessively paranoid about contracting the disease from using air conditioning systems, going to spa baths, or making contact with infected folks, people should focus more on cleanliness.
Cleanliness is the best defence against the Legionella bacteria; being particularly clean with water distribution and HVAC systems can lower the risk of infection. Also, it’s important to mention that the disease is not spread from person to person, so there’s really no need to panic buy face masks (which many are wont to do) because of the Legionnaires’ disease situation in the city, which is actually contained and not branded an epidemic yet.
Now, to effectively prevent the dreadful Legionella bacteria from breeding, Sydney residents are advised to conduct Legionella testing. This is an easy process because a Legionella test kit can be purchased online. You just need to get water samples from places where the bacteria typically occur and send those samples to the lab for examination. It won’t be long before you get the results to see if your water distribution and HVAC systems are indeed contaminated or not.
If the water samples tested positive, included in the results are instructions on how to decontaminate to prevent widespread infection. There are cleaning agents available that are specially formulated to annihilate the bacteria. In a single use, you can get rid of Legionella.
On top of that, once you get the results, you then can have yourselves tested to see if you’re infected. In curing the disease, early treatment is key; therefore, if you and your family got have been exposed to the bacteria, but you’re treated right away with the right antibiotics, you all can recover quickly and no longer suffer the physical discomforts the disease is known to bring.
Legionella bacteria can occur anytime, so conduct frequent water testing using the Legionella testing kit. This way, you can “clean” the right way and effectively prevent infection.
Written by +Duncan Hollis, Aquacert