Understanding the Model Aquatic Health Code: Series Intro

In Blog by TMI Sustainable Aquatics

The current Model Aquatic Health Code (MAHC) is nearly 200 pages long and full of complicated language for those of us not in relevant fields. This series will attempt to break some of the code down to be more accessible for all.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released the first edition of the MAHC in 2014. After that, the Council for the Model Aquatic Health Code (CMAHC) was formed to keep the code updated.

The MAHC is not legislation. There is no requirement a state or local municipality use these rules. They’re simply a collection of best practices and data collated in one document. States may use some of these guidelines or modify them as they see fit. No states have wholly adopted all the code. Many states are still in the process of reviewing it, while others have used it as guidelines for developing their own regulations.

Anyone may propose changes to the code. The CMAHC host a vote every three years where industry leaders make their voices heard on proposed changes. During the voting process, public comments are considered. If a vote passes, the change is put into the next edition of the code.

The code is not without controversy: When Arizona announced they were updating their rules and were considering the MAHC, the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals (now the Pool and Hot Tub Alliance) spoke up and claimed the code was too restrictive for contractors.[1]

Next time, we’ll start looking at some of the sections that confront issues commonly seen at sites. If there’s a section you’d like more clarity on, leave a comment below or send us an email.