Water is the healthiest and most important nutrient. Fresh tap water contains microbes. Most microbes are harmless for healthy people. Regulations of the CDC and others dictate the safety limits for water quality, therefore water is one of the most closely monitored nutrients. Water suppliers must comply with the relevant safety limits.The situation is different where people with weakened immune systems are concerned. Patients in hospitals come into contact with water in many locations.As water plays an important role in both treatment and daily personal hygiene, the microbes present in tap water can be dangerous for immunocompromised people. Gram negative facultative pathogens like Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Legionella bacteria, can cause severe infections. Approximately 4% of patients become infected during their hospital stay.
Many pathogens demonstrate multidrug resistance and often they no longer respond to antibiotics. Hygiene procedures such as hand disinfection, surface disinfection and the use of sterile water filters can interrupt infection pathways. Compliance with the three precautionary measures is important for successful and lasting infection prevention.
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