Welcome to the State of California 




MAY 23 - 29, 2011 


The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced that the week before Memorial Day (May 23 -29, 2011) is National Recreational Water Illness (RWI) Prevention Week.  The goal of this observance is to raise awareness about healthy swimming behaviors, including ways to prevent recreational water illnesses (RWIs).  RWIs are caused by germs spread by swallowing, breathing in mists or aerosols of, or having contact with contaminated water in swimming pools, water parks, hot tubs, interactive fountains, water play areas, lakes, rivers, or oceans.

The theme for RWII Prevention Week 2011 is swimmer’s ear (otitis externa).  Swimmer’s ear is a common problem for swimmers of all ages and can cause severe pain and discomfort.  During RWII Prevention Week 2011, CDC’s Healthy Swimming Program and its partners will provide the public with new information and recommendations on how to prevent swimmer’s ear.  Visit the CDC’s website at: http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/swimming/rwi/rwi-prevention-week/ 

Healthy Swimming 2011 Video Contest! 
  • Grand Prize $1,000.00
  • Contest starts May 16, 2011
  • Deadline for submission July 4, 2011
  • Public voting July 18-22, 2011
  • Winner announced July 25, 2011


·        Awareness 

  • Learn more about ways to prevent water-related adverse health events by visiting CDC’s Healthy Swimming website at www.cdc.gov/healthywater/swimming.
  • Learn how to protect yourself and others from RWIs by following the six steps to keep germs out of the pool:

    Three Steps for all Swimmers

§         Don’t swim when you have diarrhea. 

§         Don’t swallow pool water. 

§         Practice good hygiene. Shower with soap before swimming and wash your hands after using the toilet or changing diapers. Germs on your body end up in the water.

               Three Steps for Parents of Young Children 

§         Take your kids on bathroom breaks or check diapers often. 

§         Change diapers in a bathroom or a diaper-changing area and not at poolside. 

§         Wash your children thoroughly (especially the rear end) with soap and water before they go swimming. 


  • Check pool water yourself using test strips purchased at your local hardware or pool supply store.
  • Ask the pool operator about chlorine and pH levels and request information on the latest pool inspection score.

·        Advocacy

  • Encourage pool operators to take steps shown to kill the germs that cause RWIs.
  • Educate other swimmers about RWIs to promote healthy swimming.

For more information about healthy swimming, visit: 

 For links to CDC Healthy Swimming Information and Resources, click here.

 For free promotional materials, click here.

 To view CDPH's presentation on the National Recreational Water Illness Prevention Week, click here.

Last modified on: 5/19/2011 9:30 AM