Johns Hopkins Study: Electronic Faucets Unsafe for Use in Hospital Setting

Researchers at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine have determined that electronic faucets are more likely to become contaminated with high levels of bacteria, compared with traditional manually operated faucets, according to a Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America news release.

Johns Hopkins researchers examined bacterial growth from 20 manual faucets and 20 electronic faucets of two clinical wards from Dec. 2008-Jan. 2009. Cultures obtained from the faucets showed 50 percent of water cultures from electronic faucets grew Legionella spp., compared to 15 percent of water cultures from manual faucets.

Additionally, following a flush of the water system using chlorine dioxide, the disparity between electronic and manual faucets persisted. After the cleaning, 29 percent of electronic faucet cultures were still contaminated with bacteria compared with seven percent of manual faucet cultures. Researchers speculated the increased bacterial growth in electronic faucets may be due to contamination of its numerous parts and valves.

Read the news release about bacterial growth in electronic faucets.

Read other coverage about infection control in hospitals:

- Infection Outbreak at Alabama Hospitals Leads to 9 Patient Deaths

-
Study: Higher Nurse Staffing Levels Can Reduce Infection Rates

-
AHRQ Issues Results of Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture

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