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CMMS Helps Hospital Prevent Legionnaire’s Disease
July 14, 2008 - HVAC
With HVAC units in just about every room, the 825-bed Mater Dei Hospital in Malta, the state-of-the-art hosptial had a complex water system. The last thing the hospital needed was for the system to increase the risk of patients becoming sick.
Legionnaire’s Disease is of particular concern. Caused by a type of bacteria called Legionella, Legionnaires’ disease is a type of pneumonia that can cause death in up to 30 percent of those infected. The bacteria, found naturally in the environment, thrive in warm water, such as the water found in cooling towers, hot water tanks, large plumbing systems or parts of air conditioning systems of large buildings. Hospitals and its inhabitants are particularly vulnerable.
In the long hot summers, condensate accumulates on the air conditioning coils from where a drip tray collects and drains this water at the hospital. Staff worried that water can accumulate and warm up to the critical temperature range for Legionella propagation if it isn't draining properly. Legionella bacteria multiply rapidly in the temperature range 68 F to 122 F.
To ensure that these hundreds of drip trays are regularly inspected, the facility managers at Malta and CWorks developed a feature in the PM System that creates work orders for multiple units, but includes individual records for each HVAC unit.
Customization avoids the needless proliferation of separate work orders and provides a complete record of compliance and any required corrections. Thus the CMMS ensures that the ordinary but potentially risky drip tray is inspected for correct function on a regular basis.
With some 35,000 equipment Items including the A/C units that need to be regularly maintained, the MaterDei Hospital’s CMMS not only ensures these A/C units are working properly, but also helps to avoid creating a hospitable environment for this disease.
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