COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., Feb. 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The National Swimming Pool Foundation® (NSPF®), a non-profit 501(c) (3) organization, announced today that it has received settlement payments totaling $168,000 to resolve a copyright infringement lawsuit against the state health department in Nebraska and three counties. The Central District of Nebraska, the State of Nebraska, the Lincoln/Lancaster County and the Douglas County Nebraska Health Departments were alleged to have used NSPF educational materials published between 1983 and 2007. NSPF will direct all proceeds beyond attorney fees, approximately $80,000, to the NSPF grant budget.
"We are pleased to look ahead to cooperating on our shared mission, to improve public health and protect people," said Tracynda Davis, M.P.H., Director of Environmental Health Programs at NSPF. "We wish to work constructively with health professionals to create effective training, with minimal burden on tax payers," she added.
NSPF has also announced an amnesty program to other health departments that may be using NSPF materials. Those departments are encouraged to contact Susan.Wichmann@nspf.org prior to May 31, 2011, and NSPF will not pursue legal action. "The departments must agree to cease and desist from using NSPF materials and to work in good faith with NSPF to offer training consistent with the standard of care in our field," stated Thomas M. Lachocki, Ph.D., CEO of the NSPF. Twenty three states require public pool operators to earn a certification based on a two-day training program to better ensure that pools comply with code and prevent illness, drowning, and accidents.
"When a dispute can be transformed into an opportunity to fund research, all parties win," explained Dr. Lachocki. "The NSPF Board is committed to funding research that solves environmental health problems." Over the past seven years, NSPF has given $3.7 million to fund grants to prevent illness, injury and drowning, and to demonstrate the benefits of aquatic activity — including over $ 1.1 million, since 2003, specifically directed to critical environmental health issues such as Cryptosporidium, disinfection-by-products, creation of a Model Aquatic Health Code, and lifeguarding practices. Leading organizations receiving NSPF prevention-focused grants include the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), University of North Carolina-Charlotte, Purdue University, and New York Medical College, School of Public Health.
In addition to grants, NSPF has a long history of supporting environmental health officials and departments, including hosting the National Swimming Pool Environmental Health Leader Meeting, at no cost to attendees, in conjunction with the World Aquatic Health™ Conference. Both foster communication, best practices and problem solving between state and county health departments and leading environmental health officials and connect them to the most current research.
The National Swimming Pool Foundation (NSPF) is a non-profit organization founded in 1965. The Foundation works towards its mission to encourage healthier living through aquatic education and research with its collection of educational products and training. NSPF is the leading educator for professionals who service and operate public and private pools and spas and for public health officials who are responsible for pool safety. More than 282,000 professionals have been trained worldwide and their materials have been used in 64 countries. Visit www.nspf.org.
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Thomas Lachocki, Ph.D
SOURCE National Swimming Pool Foundation