COVID-19 Prevention Focus Shifts to Indoor Air Quality

COVID-19 Prevention Focus Shifts to Indoor Air Quality

Today’s White House webinar will outline techniques for improving IAQ in facilities

COVID-19 mitigation efforts of the past two years have progressed from facility shutdowns and social distancing to mask-wearing and vaccinations. As we enter the third year of the pandemic, with facilities reopened and mask-wearing optional, facility managers are focused on monitoring indoor air quality (IAQ), McKnights Long-Term Care News reports.

The shift has been spurred by ongoing research pinpointing the spread of SARS-CoV-2 to airborne particles and a call for improved ventilation inside buildings. A recent push by a White House advisor highlighted the commonly accepted theory that the coronavirus is spread through tiny aerosolized particles that remain suspended in the air from minutes to hours after an infected person has been in the area.

Dr. Alondra Nelson, MD, head of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, is recommending that facility managers use evidence-based techniques for improving IAQ from opening windows and using portable air-cleaning devices to installing built-in air purification technology. This technology includes constant indoor room air exchange using highly effective filters in HVAC systems. Nelson said studies have found that five air changes an hour inside a facility can reduce COVID-19 transmission risk by 50%.

“While there are various strategies for avoiding breathing that air—from remote work to masking—we can and should talk more about how to make indoor environments safer by filtering or cleaning the air,” she said.

Omicron lasts longer on surfaces and skin

Omicron lasts longer on surfaces and skin than previous variants: studies

Article By Chia-Yi Hou | March 24, 2022

Health experts have agreed that the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus causing COVID-19 is mostly transmitted through the air. However, there were concerns, especially early in the pandemic, about it getting transferred by touching surfaces containing the virus. Researchers have continued to investigate this line of inquiry to get a more complete understanding of how the virus spreads and exists in the environment. In two recent studies, teams of researchers found that the omicron variant lasted longer on surfaces and on human skin compared to other variants. 

Read Full Article Here

Indoor Air Quality and Air Purification

Indoor Air Quality and Air Purification

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), infectious diseases can spread when an infected person coughs, sneezes, talks, or breathes out droplets and tiny particles that contain viruses or bacteria. These droplets and particles can be breathed in by other people or land on their eyes, noses or mouth. An infected person can contaminate surfaces they touch. Virus particles and bacteria in the air can settle on and contaminate surfaces. Peoples can get infected by touching their eyes, nose, or mouth with hands contaminated by a virus or bacteria.

A study from National Institutes of Health (NIH); CDC; University of California, Los Angeles; and Princeton University scientists in The New England Journal of Medicine found that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) that cause COVID-19 was detectable in respiratory droplets in the air for up to three hours.

Indoor Air Quality Matters to Employees and Customers

Indoor Air Quality Matters to Employees and Customers

Survey finds more than 70% of North Americans concerned about poor air quality in facilities

The coronavirus pandemic has left the majority of North Americans feeling anxious about entering buildings they believe may have poor indoor air quality (IAQ). 

The survey of 3,000 U.S. and Canadian adults discovered that 76% would consider joining the “Great Resignation” if their employees did not guarantee wellness factors such
as healthy IAQ, work-life balance, and proper workplace cleanliness. The survey found:


    • 70% of survey respondents think their workplace air quality needs improving
    • 39% describe the current condition of their workplace’s IAQ as either average, poor, or bad 
    • 69% said their workspaces need better investment in health, hygiene, and safety in 2022 and beyond, while 62% said the same about restaurants and businesses. 
    • 57% said workspace environments have become more important to them since the pandemic.
    • 48% list better air hygiene as important, while 43 value spaces designed with wellness and health in mind.

Omicron BA.2 subvariant is more contagious

Omicron BA.2 subvariant is more contagious and can reinfect people, but isn’t more severe, studies find

A more contagious subvariant of omicron, known as BA.2, is spreading across the globe and could soon become the dominant version of Covid-19.

It’s now the top variant in at least 18 countries and rapidly spreading, representing 35% of all new cases that have been genetically sequenced worldwide, up from 10 countries and 21% of cases the week before, according to new data from the World Health Organization. In the U.S, BA.2 currently makes up 3.8% of genetically sequenced Covid cases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.