The CDC’s Foodborne Pathogens Program, which provides support for state, local, and tribal governments, issued a voluntary guidance on Thursday for people who use water filters for drinking water to protect their kids.
The guidance includes recommendations for parents, grandparents, and others with children to ensure they use water-filter-only water for drinking and bathing.
If you have any concerns about your children’s drinking water at home, the guidance urges you to call your local health department.
“There are no good answers at this point, but we hope that parents will continue to monitor their children for signs of waterborne illness,” Dr. James J. Martin, assistant director of the CDC’s Center for Infectious Diseases, told reporters at the agency’s Atlanta headquarters.
The advice also urges people who think their child may be at risk to get tested.
In addition to the CDC guidance, state health departments are working on their own guidance.
“States are also developing their own voluntary water-filtering guidelines,” the CDC said.
The CDC recommends that people drink bottled water and use filtered tap water to prevent germs from entering the water.
While the guidance doesn’t recommend water filters, some states have already taken steps to tighten their policies.
California’s governor, Jerry Brown, announced on Wednesday that bottled water would no longer be allowed in the state’s public swimming pools and restaurants.
California also announced that people would be required to boil tap water before using it for drinking, cooking, or bathing.
Other states are also considering restrictions, including Texas, Florida, and New York.
“There is no silver bullet,” Dr Martin said.
“We’ve got to be thoughtful about how we use water, and we have to have the right tools to make sure that we’re not compromising our public health and safety.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. has more than 2.2 million reported cases of water-borne illness each year.
Some water-related outbreaks have been attributed to people drinking contaminated tap water or not using filters, while others have been caused by a lack of proper water infrastructure or poor water treatment practices.
Some people with water-inflicted illnesses can recover from the illness, but others may have to resort to using bottled water.