Public Pools

CDC Releases the 4th Edition of the Model Aquatic Health Code

Mar 23, 2023 | Rebecca Rainey

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released the 4th edition of the Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC), found here. First published in 2014, the MAHC is a set of guidelines intended to prevent injury and illness at public aquatic venues, such as pools, hot tubs, and splash pads, and created in a collaborative effort between public health officials and aquatics sector leaders. Developed using the latest science and best practices, these guidelines seek to reduce the leading health risks of aquatic venues, such as swimming-related disease outbreaks, drowning, and pool chemical injuries. Jurisdictions can voluntarily adopt all or parts of the MAHC, and aquatic sector leaders can use the MAHC as guidance even if their jurisdiction has not adopted the code.

The Council for the Model Aquatic Health Code (CMAHC) was established to help the CDC keep up to date with the latest advances in the aquatics sector and update the MAHC accordingly. In addition to language standardization and other formatting changes, key content changes made in the 4th edition of the MAHC include:

  1. Cyanuric acid as a closure item
    Aquatic venues using chlorine stabilizers where the cyanuric acid to DPD-free chlorine concentration ratio exceeds 45:1 are considered imminent health hazards that may necessitate immediate correction or closure. Recognizing cyanuric acid ratio as a closure item can help prevent pathogen transmission.
  2. Lower minimum pH
    The pH of water shall be maintained at 7.0-7.8.
  3. Starting platforms and minimum water depth for new construction
    New construction of starting platforms shall be installed at a minimum water depth of six feet; increasing this minimum depth may help prevent spinal cord injuries.
  4. Maximum vertical clearance
    The maximum vertical clearance at the bottom of an aquatic venue or facility enclosure should not exceed 2 inches above grade on non-solid surfaces (including grass and gravel) and 4 inches above grade on solid surfaces. These maximum vertical clearances may help prevent drowning and increase aquatic venue safety.

Stay tuned for updated inspection forms and other MAHC-related resources at the CDC website here.

Get Involved

NACCHO and CDC support the Model Aquatic Health Code through the MAHC Network, a community of MAHC users, subject matter experts, and those interested in the code. Members will receive code updates and resources, provide input on new resources, and access webinars featuring the code and its users. Visit NACCHO’s MAHC webpage to learn more and join the e-newsletter.


About Rebecca Rainey

More posts by Rebecca Rainey

Related Posts

Lessons Learned From Local Health Departments
  • Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene

Meeting the Needs of People Experiencing Homelessness...

Article in March 2024 issue of the Journal of Public Health Management and...

Feb 09, 2024 | Rebecca Rainey

Meeting the Needs of People Experiencing Homelessness...

Vector control workshop 2019 4
  • Funding Opportunity
  • Tools & Resources
  • Opportunity
  • Training

2024 Vector Control Hurricane Crisis Workshop:...

Local vector control programs in North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, and...

Feb 08, 2024 | Anu Varma

2024 Vector Control Hurricane Crisis Workshop:...

Updates on Lead/Chromium in Applesauce: CDC Call on...

Join the CDC on February 8, 2024, at 2pm EST.

Feb 06, 2024

Updates on Lead/Chromium in Applesauce: CDC Call on...

Pool checklist
  • Tools & Resources
  • Webinar
  • Community Health
  • Water Quality

[Webinar] Using Environmental Health Data to Inform Pool...

Model Aquatic Health Code Network Webinar - February 2024.

Jan 29, 2024 | Rebecca Rainey

[Webinar] Using Environmental Health Data to Inform Pool...

Doctor Research Tools Preparedness

Please Share with Clinicians: Updated PFAS Information...

Updated information for clinicians to consider when seeing patients who have...

Jan 18, 2024 | Guest Author

Please Share with Clinicians: Updated PFAS Information...

I Stock 1354439496
  • Tools & Resources
  • COVID-19

Lessons Learned from NACCHO’s Wastewater Surveillance...

Read our new report to learn about the background and activities of each...

Jan 18, 2024 | Rebecca Rainey

Lessons Learned from NACCHO’s Wastewater Surveillance...

2024 Vector Workshop SM
  • Vector Control

2024 Vector Control Hurricane Crisis Workshop:...

Local vector control programs in North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, and...

Jan 16, 2024 | Anu Varma

2024 Vector Control Hurricane Crisis Workshop:...

Brown rat

2024 Urban Rodent Control Webinar Series

Join this four-part Pest Education Webinars on Urban Rodent Control hosted by...

Jan 09, 2024

2024 Urban Rodent Control Webinar Series

2023

Looking Back at 2023: A Year in Review for Environmental...

Presenting our new infographic detailing our work and impact in 2023!

Jan 09, 2024 | Anu Varma

Looking Back at 2023: A Year in Review for Environmental...

Back to Top