Legionella Conference 2020 Moves to Chicago with Healthcare Focus

Legionella Conference 2020: Prevention of Disease and Injury From Waterborne Pathogens in Health Care will be held in Chicago, Illinois Aug. 19-21, 2020, with an emphasis on preventing deadly outbreaks in hospitals and healthcare settings. NSF Health Sciences, an NSF International company, and the National Environmental Health Association are partnering as conference co-hosts to help stem this rising public health threat.

Public health leaders, policy makers, researchers, practitioners and water management systems experts will discuss policies and strategies for the prevention of healthcare-associated waterborne disease outbreaks, including hazards related to medical devices, cleaning and disinfection in sterile settings and water quality requirements in hospitals and healthcare facilities.

Legionnaires’ disease is fatal to 25% of patients who contract it in a healthcare setting and to 10% of the general population, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC recently reported a record number of Legionnaires’ disease cases – 9,933 in 2018, an eightfold increase over 2000. In its August 2019 report called Management of Legionella in Water Systems, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine conservatively estimated the actual number of Legionnaires’ cases each year in United States is between 52,000 and 70,000.

According to an extensive review reported by the CDC in 2016, 90% of outbreaks could have been prevented with a comprehensive water management plan.

Legionella prevention in hospitals and healthcare facilities emerged as an important focus topic at the 2019 Legionella Conference held in Los Angeles, California.

Legionella is a naturally occurring bacteria dispersed through man-made water systems in the form of contaminated aerosolized droplets. Common sources are showerheads, cooling towers, public fountains and hot tubs.

Once inhaled, an acute form of pneumonia called Legionnaires’ disease can develop. Legionella can also lead to the less severe Pontiac Fever illness.

This will be the third annual Legionella Conference bringing together industry experts and policy makers to discuss solutions and prevention. Dr. Patrick Breysse, director of the CDC’s National Center for Environmental Health/Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, delivered the keynote address to the 360 attendees at the September 2019 conference.

The deadline to submit abstracts for oral presentations is March 1, 2020. The deadline to submit abstracts for poster presentations is April 1, 2020. Applications for presentations and posters may be submitted online at http://www.legionellaconference.org/call-for-abstracts/.

Pre-conference training workshops will be held Aug. 18, 2020, the day before the conference officially begins.

To find out more about the Legionella Conference 2020 or how to present, visit the website at www.legionellaconference.org or email info@legionellaconference.org.