Water Supply Planning for Hospitals and Health Care Facilities

As you may recall, EPA Region 5 has been engaged in a series of conferences and workshops to identify and discuss security and interdependencies between the water community and other critical infrastructure sectors.  The most recent effort was a conference targeting the Hospital and Health Care community and their needs and expectations relative to water supply.

As a result of that conference, EPA and CDC joined forces to publish an Emergency Water Supply Plan (EWSP) for that audience so that…“to maintain daily operations and patient care services, health care facilities need to develop an Emergency Water Supply Plan (EWSP) to prepare for, respond to, and recover from a total or partial interruption of the facilities’ normal water supply.  Water supply interruption can be caused by several types of events such as natural disaster, a failure of the community water system, construction damage or even an act of terrorism.  Because water supplies can and do fail, it is imperative to understand and address how patient safety, quality of care, and the operations of your facility will be impacted… A health care facility must be able to respond to and recover from a water supply interruption. A robust EWSP can provide a road map for response and recovery by providing the guidance to assess water usage, response capabilities, and water alternatives.

This link http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/emergency/drinking_water_advisory/index.html will take you directly to the Emergency Water Supply Plan (EWSP).  Please share this information with all of your water supplies and encourage them to reach out to their critical hospital and health care customers.  You are also encouraged to share this information with your peer health and emergency management agencies at the state level.  Such a proactive approach will go far toward mitigating the level of crisis should a water emergency arise.



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