An outbreak of cryptosporidium infection affected at least 172 British tourists who had stayed at a family hotel in a Mediterranean resort. Recognition of the outbreak came from non-official sources. In the absence of any meaningful investigations by the public health authorities of both the countries, a tour operator undertook an investigation. The epidemiological studies were restricted but it was concluded that the outbreak was associated with contaminated swimming pool water at the hotel. The initial source of contamination was most probably a hotel guest who was excreting cryptosporidium oocysts. Examination of the water treatment system revealed some deficiencies in the sand filters but the effect on the course of the outbreak could not be determined. Although the media in the filters was thoroughly cleaned and the filters refreshed, oocysts could still be detected in pool water and further cases occurred. The challenges of an outbreak involving more than one country and the measures necessary to reduce the risks of cryptosporidium infections associated with hotel swimming pools are discussed.
- swimming pool
- © IWA Publishing 2002