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Southern Arizona VA Health Care System

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Tucson VA Receives Legionella Test Results for Mental Health Residential Treatment Building

March 22, 2017

TUCSON, AZ – Earlier this week, the Tucson VA campus received Legionella tests results from Building 95, the Mental Health Residential Treatment Program building. This test includes both the hot and the cold water distribution systems within the building.

The test samples, which included 20 water samples from various locations throughout Building 95, found 12 positive indication of Legionella in the fixtures. The water samples are processed by Phigenics Analytics Services Laboratory who is certified to conduct the Legionella testing.

A point of use filter, which blocks Legionella, was installed on the all the fixtures which tested positive. We are taking immediate remediation steps and will retest in accordance with VHA Directive 1061, Prevention of Healthcare-Associated Legionella Disease and Scald Injury from Potable Water Distribution Systems. The test results will be available within 10 to 14 days and the results will be shared with our Veterans, employees, and the public. The Tucson VA has a zero tolerance policy for Legionella bacteria, and there is no impact to patient care.

The building opened in January 2017, and this is the first Legionella sample collection performed by Tucson VA staff. 

It is important to note that Legionella is present in natural and artificial water environments worldwide. Person-to-person transmission of Legionella disease does not occur. We want to stress the water is safe to drink, use in washing of hands and for use in patient care. The water conditions at the Tucson VA have not caused any infections in either patients or staff.

For media inquiries, please contact the SAVAHCS Public Affairs office at (520) 629-1819.