CDC warns about parasite in hotel pools

Swimming pool steps Shutterstock ID 45581332 Purchase Order

Swimming pool steps Shutterstock ID 45581332 Purchase Order

Almost 500 outbreaks associated with treated recreational water led to 27,219 illnesses and eight deaths from 2000 to 2014, the CDC said in its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report released Thursday. Hotel swimming pools and cases of diarrhea accounted for many illnesses.

Families that are going on vacation this summer may want to stay out of the hotel pool. Whether you have a pool in your yard or your neighborhood or if you plan to take a dip in a hotel pool, a word of caution. Crypto spreads in pools when someone sick with the parasite has diarrhea in the water and other swimmers swallow that contaminated water. Included in those illnesses were eight deaths.

A third of treated recreational waterborne disease outbreaks (such as pools, hot tubs, and water playgrounds) during 2000 through 2014 occurred in hotel pools or hot tubs, according to a report published today in CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Hotel swimming pools were the leading setting for the incidents, accounting for 157 of the 493 recorded outbreaks.

Examining the hotel breakouts, 60 percent involved a confirmed infectious etiology.

Outbreaks spiked during June, July and August, but they were observed all year long throughout the study period. Lifeguards are expected to keep a close eye on anything in the pool that may cause an outbreak. The leading pathogens in these reported cases were Cryptosporidium, Legionella, and Pseudomonas.

This parasite can be transmitted in the water during diarrhea, and that is likely how the pools got infected. Maintaining a safe and clean pool by using the right amount of chemicals is a priority.

What Steps Can Be Taken To Stop The Outbreak?

The CDC recommends hyperchlorination of the water in the pool so that bacteria can be killed.

Before getting in the water, use a test strip from your local retailer or pool supply store to check if the water's pH and bromine or free chlorine level are correct.

And most importantly, don't let your babies into the water unless they're wearing swim diapers. Keeping your child out of public pools when having diarrhea or otherwise being ill is also a good idea, CNN suggested. "I think people are educated and know if they are having bathroom problems not to come to the pool", said Fauria. We are talking about preventing an illness by prescribing basic hygiene. If Crypto caused the diarrhea, wait two weeks after the diarrhea has stopped before swimming.

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