Reduction in cryptosporidiosis associated with introduction of enhanced filtration of drinking water at Loch Katrine, Scotland

Pollock, K.G. and Young, David and Robertson, Chris and Ahmed, S. and Ramsay, Colin N. (2014) Reduction in cryptosporidiosis associated with introduction of enhanced filtration of drinking water at Loch Katrine, Scotland. Epidemiology and Infection, 142 (1). pp. 56-62. ISSN 0950-2688

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Abstract

Previous evidence has suggested an association between cryptosporidiosis and consumption of unfiltered drinking water from Loch Katrine in Scotland. Before September 2007, the water was only micro-strained and chlorinated; however, since that time, coagulation and rapid gravity filtration have been installed. In order to determine risk factors associated with cryptosporidiosis, including drinking water, we analysed data on microbiologically confirmed cases of cryptosporidiosis from 2004 to 2010. We identified an association between the incidence of cryptosporidiosis and unfiltered Loch Katrine drinking water supplied to the home (odds ratio 1·86, 95% confidence interval 1·11-3·11, P = 0·019). However, while filtration appears to be associated with initially reduced rates of cryptosporidiosis, evidence suggests it may paradoxically make those consumers more susceptible to other transmission routes in the long-term. These findings support implementation of similar treatment for other unfiltered drinking-water supplies, as a means of reducing cryptosporidiosis associated with drinking water.