Reducing Transmission of Infection in the Care Industry
The health and social care industries were impacted particularly negatively throughout the pandemic, with rising costs, staff shortages and the emergence of new COVID-19 variants making it impossible to keep the virus contained. By July 2020, 56% of care homes had reported having at least one confirmed case of coronavirus even before more infectious mutations began to circulate (ONS, 2020).
This blog post discusses all the ways in which Far-UVC can help the care industry to combat COVID-19 and prepare for future pandemics.
Reduced transmission of infection
Infection spreads especially quickly in care homes and private medical facilities. Nearly 30% of all care home resident deaths in England and Wales involved a COVID-19 diagnosis at the peak of the pandemic in 2020 (ONS, 2020). With many high-risk individuals sharing the same space and shift workers entering and leaving continuously, it’s important to minimise viral and bacterial transmission.
Far-UVC technology destroys up to 99% of pathogens in the air and on surfaces, helping to keep environments free from viruses. This can help to stop the spread of infection in shared spaces and keep virus outbreaks contained.
Reduced energy and cleaning costs
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, cleaning routines in care and medical facilities have become costly. Keeping surfaces sanitised throughout the day proves challenging and time consuming for care workers who are already rushed off their feet. In addition, the cost of distributing clean, fresh air throughout buildings has significantly increased running costs for facilities across the UK.
Installing a Far-UVC device within an HVAC unit can reduce costs by sanitising the air that passes through air conditioning systems, minimising the need for outside air to be pumped into the building. It provides a much more energy efficient way of disinfecting a facilities’ air supply. It also offers a way of keeping surfaces clean without the need to constantly apply harsh chemical sanitisers.
Improved resident and patient wellbeing
The safety of residents has been hugely important throughout the pandemic, meaning care providers have often had to compromise on resident happiness. Family visits were stopped, patients were confined to bubbles and social distancing measures were adhered to, adversely affecting resident wellbeing (ONS, 2020). Even today, as we are beginning to live with COVID-19, strict testing rules are in place and visits are permitted by appointment only in care homes across the UK.
Equipping communal and high-traffic areas such as living and eating areas and waiting rooms can stop viruses spreading between individuals, allowing residents to regain valuable social time with friends and relatives.
Protection against variants
Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have seen a number of coronavirus mutations including Delta, Omicron and most recently, Deltacron. With each mutation more contagious than the last, it is vital that care facilities protect those who are vulnerable.
Far-UVC destroys pathogens on a molecular level, meaning it is effective against all variants of COVID-19 as well as common colds and flus. As well as protecting against COVID-19 and any mutations, it will also better prepare care and medical facilities for future pandemics.
Sets providers apart from the rest
More and more industries are beginning to adopt Far-UVC across the globe. Whilst it has been used in the medical industry for decades, uptake by care providers is relatively recent. Suzanne Elise Assisted Living, a senior living community in Oregon, have recently elevated their protection by installing Far-UVC lights in their lobby, dining room, kitchen and hallways.
Providing additional protection for both patients and staff will set certain providers apart as industry pioneers. When people are choosing their care provider, those facilities that are going above and beyond to reduce transmission of infection will stand out from their competitors.
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