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The Ugly Truth About Senior Living Hot Water Systems

Most people will require some form of assisted living or long-term care support in their lifetime. In the United States, 28,000 assisted living facilities (ALFs) and skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) house more than one million people in frail health. Building managers for SNFs and long-term care centers with complex water systems face mounting challenges, not least in the area of water safety. Knowing what these challenges are and what you can do about them will keep your building safe and compliant with current water safety standards including the ASHRAE 188. When it comes to senior living water systems what threats do you need to be aware of?

CONTAMINATION

If the facility is based in a rural area, it may be a well system, which can be a higher risk for contamination of items like lead. Facilities on a municipal system will benefit from a variety of quality control. It’s worth remembering that different external forces can compromise any water supply. For example, agricultural runoff or stormwater, construction work being conducted in the area, and spillage of hazardous materials. The way to mitigate this is to conduct regular water testing with a professional water treater. It’s vital to collect as much information about the premises’ water as possible. This will guarantee that you can have a better chance of preventing contamination or disease outbreak.

 

AGING WATER SYSTEM INFRASTRUCTURES

Old facilities are bound by old pumps and aging equipment which can provide a variety of adverse outcomes. At the same time, the infrastructure cannot be tampered with on a fundamental level. If left, over time, this can cause equipment failure and contaminate the water supply. Ensuring that your water treater visits the site to assess the current state of the equipment and infrastructure prevents more minor problems from becoming bigger ones. The importance of having a water safety management plan helps you be more proactive in this situation. While older water systems are commonplace, the importance of checking them regularly is something no one should underestimate.

AT-RISK POPULATIONS

Patients and residents of hospitals, SNF’s, and ALFs may have pre-existing health conditions. Pathogens such as Legionella can result in life-threatening illnesses. As individuals in these settings may struggle to fight respiratory diseases, it is crucial to develop a Legionella prevention plan. Developing a plan guarantees that you stay compliant with water safety standards such as ASHRAE. It’s also critical to utilize a water safety team and incorporate a water safety program. This allows you to monitor your water systems and equipment.

Water management in a senior living environment is something that we cannot overlook. It is essential to ensure that compromised individuals are protected. Senior living facilities can be forgotten due to a variety of circumstances. However, it doesn’t need to be like this. The importance of installing a suitable water heating unit will guarantee that your residents are safe and comfortable. Our Intellihot tankless units are a fantastic way to ensure that your hot water system is solid and secure to keep you and your residents safe and comfortable.