CDC Recreational Water-related Programs and Projects
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conduct various research, programs, projects, and activities related to Healthy Swimming and recreational water. Explore some of the ongoing work at our various Centers, below.
National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID) and National Center for Environmental Health (NCEH)
The Healthy Swimming Program
Addressing recreational water–related health needs of the public in collaboration with partners is Healthy Swimming's top priority. To translate research into recommendations and guidelines for the public, pool operators, and public health professionals and to disseminate this evidence-based information in a timely manner through various channels, the Healthy Swimming Program:
- Maintains the Healthy Swimming website, which provides information to the public, pool operators, public health professionals, and health care providers about topics related to recreational water, including: education about recreational water illnesses (RWIs) such as Crypto (short for Cryptosporidium), Giardia and Hot Tub Rash; healthy swimming behaviors that can help prevent RWIs (for example, not swimming while ill with diarrhea; tools for preventing and controlling RWI outbreaks; disease surveillance; data and statistics (including journal articles and studies); and water quality in natural bodies of water such as oceans and lakes.
- Creates posters, brochures, podcasts, videos, fact sheets and other materials to educate the public about healthy swimming behaviors.
- Develops recommendations on operation and disinfection of treated recreational water venues (for example, pools, water parks, and interactive fountains) for aquatics staff.
- Develops outbreak response toolkits, guidelines, and educational materials for public health professionals.
- Develops recommendations for pediatricians on talking to parents about keeping children out of the water when they are ill with diarrhea.
- Responds to swimming- and recreational water-related inquiries from the public, pool operators, public health professionals, and health care providers.
- Sponsors the development of the national Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC) that will serve as a guide for local and state agencies to update or implement evidence- and best practices–based standards governing the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of treated recreational water venues.