New York City adopts ASHRAE Legionella Standard
Following an outbreak that has resulted in 12 deaths and 120 cases of infection, the New York City Council adopted legislation to comply with a portion of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers' (ASHRAE) new Legionella standard.

The legislation addresses registration and inspection of cooling towers, and requires owners to create and file a plan to maintain equipment to comply with Section 7.2 of ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 188-2015, Legionellosis: Risk Management for Building Water Systems.

The standard provides minimum Legionellosis risk-management requirements for the design, construction, commissioning, operation, maintenance, repair, replacement and expansion of new and existing buildings and their associated water systems and components.

"Standard 188 was published just two short months ago," ASHRAE President David Underwood stated. "Although the circumstances surrounding its use are tragic, ASHRAE is grateful that the standard is available to set requirements to manage risk of this bacteria."

Also this week:

FDA issues regulatory warnings to three duodenoscope makers
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued warning letters to three duodenoscope manufacturers alleging certain regulatory violations. Olympus Corp. of the Americas and Hoya Corp. were cited for failing to report infections associated with their devices to the FDA within 30 days and to adequately develop, maintain and implement written Medical Device Reporting procedures. Fujifilm Medical Systems USA Inc. was cited for alleged violations related to design control, corrective action, inspection of parts, process validation, complaint handling, equipment testing, production processes, and device correction or removal.

California approves security cameras at assisted-living homes
The California Department of Social Services approved the use of security cameras in patient rooms of assisted living homes as long as the patient and their family agree to it. Previously, under California law, cameras were only used to monitor residents in such common areas as hallways or dining facilities.

Joint Commission alert on new ISO tubing connector standards
The Joint Commission has issued an alert on managing risk during transition to new ISO tubing connector standards. The alert includes reminders for clinicians and tips for health care organizations to ensure patient safety.

VA Announces New Rules Regarding Service Animals in VA Facilities
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) revised its regulation regarding animals on VA property. Under the revised regulation, only dogs that are individually trained to perform work or tasks on behalf of an individual with a disability will be considered service animals. Other animals will not be permitted in VA facilities, unless expressly allowed as an exception under the regulation for activities such as animal-assisted therapy or for other reasons, such as law enforcement purposes.

Interactive OSHA Web page offers details on large fines
A new Web page from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) highlights recent fines levied against employers for safety and health violations. The Web page features an interactive map with a listing of every penalty greater than $40,000 that OSHA issued in each state since Jan. 1.