The RQIA have ordered a Belfast care home to act after the potentially deadly legionella bacteria was found in their hot and cold water systems. 
Residents living in the Glenalina Lodge Care Centre were given days to be placed in alternative accommodation earlier this year after the Fire Service issued a Prohibition Notice on the owners Radius Housing following a recent fire safety audit. Some residents have now been moved back into the Care Home despite Legionella bacteria being found in the water systems. 
An Area For Improvement recommendation was made after an inspection report that the risk of exposure to legionella bacteria was to be suitably controlled prior to the re-admittance of residents to the home. 
The article (Source here) reports: 
"The Notice of Proposal states that the RQIA was subsequently informed on October 3 2022 by the 'Responsible Individual' of their intention to begin the re-admittance of residents commencing on October 4. 
However, results of the most recent water samples at that time indicated that legionella bacteria were still present in the premises’ hot and cold water systems. 
Results from water samples forwarded to RQIA on October 5 further confirmed the continued presence of legionella bacteria." 
The proposal says that: “RQIA is concerned that the Responsible Individual’s decision to re-admit residents to the home under such circumstances and contrary to the direction provided by RQIA during the recent estates inspection evidenced a lack of effective risk management and placed residents at potential risk of harm. 
“Further contact with the Responsible Individual on 6 and 7 October 2022 confirmed that eight residents had been admitted into the home from 4 to 7 October 2022 (inclusive) contrary to the direction of RQIA. 
“It was also noted that the Responsible Individual had not made any recent contact with the Environmental Health Officer prior to these admissions in order to determine the appropriateness of such a decision.” 
This once again highlights the importance of legionella risk assessments and monitoring, and sufficient training in areas such as fire safety. 
GES Water offer a full range of water hygiene services including Legionella risk assessments and many online courses to keep you compliant and your customers and staff safe. Our team have a wealth of knowledge within the industry and can help you with any questions or queries you may have.Please contact us here for more information. 
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