Safety

California hospital endures long weekend without water

Hospital Safety Insider, June 8, 2017

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A hospital in California’s Napa Valley went without water for four days after a water main broke last week during regularly scheduled testing.

Patients and staff at Adventist Health’s St. Helena Hospital were told to turn off the tap and use antibacterial wipes instead for hygiene needs. The alternative cleaning method is the same as that typically used for bedridden patients, hospital communication manager Suwanna Vatananan told the St. Helena Star.

The system that supplies water to the hospital and its surrounding community was scheduled to be tested for inorganic compounds on Thursday, the paper reported, citing California’s Safe Drinking Water Information System. That’s when a rapid change in pressure within the pipes leading to the hospital caused the break, prompting the emergency shutdown.

Although the necessary repairs were made quickly, the hospital waited until officials in Sacramento conducted additional testing to ensure that the water supply was free from contamination, Vatananan said. The go-ahead came Monday morning, and the hospital once again permitted patients and staff to fully enjoy the benefits of indoor plumbing.

For more on safety-minded healthcare facilities management, check out HCPro’s monthly safety newsletters: Healthcare Life Safety Compliance, Medical Environment Update, and Briefings on Hospital Safety.



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