How To Protect Your Patients From The Aerosolisation of Coronavirus
Even when asymptomatic, those carrying the COVID-19 virus can still shed the bacterium in their waste.
For virus tracking, this has been rather beneficial. By conducting coronavirus tests on sewage wastewater, the impact on a local area can be measured – allowing for early action when required.
However, for many of us – especially those in the healthcare profession – the spread of coronavirus in faeces is extremely worrying, especially when you consider how rapidly (and easily) it can become an airborne threat.
Pathogens from waste can be aerosolised as a result of our most basic hygiene practices. 95% of droplets produced by flushing a toilet, for example, are small enough to present an airborne infection concern[i].
Once those droplets are in the air, we know what happens next – they’re free to find their way to people’s mouths and noses, spreading the illness.
In a hospital environment, this can be catastrophic. Whole wards can share a single bathroom facility, exposing numerous patients, staff and visitors to aerosolised coronavirus pathogens before the original patient even shows symptoms.
How can you prevent the spread of coronavirus when even the most necessary of tasks, undertaken by seemingly healthy people, could push it into the atmosphere?
Flushing the toilet with the lid down is a key defence.
The turbulence caused by the flush can propel very small droplets of water high into the air above the toilet[i]. These particles can reach about a metre above the toilet seat and remain suspended there for more than a minute – causing peril for the next user, especially in high-demand areas.
The best prevention method is to always flush the toilet when the lid is closed, while ensuring that toilets are cleaned frequently (particularly the lid, seat and flush handle or button).
Of course, washing your hands after using the toilet is still critically important, too.
The right air purification system can protect your sluice rooms and bathrooms from the spread of aerosolised bacteria.
No matter how much signage you put up or verbal directions you give, there still may be people who forget to close the toilet lid when they flush, or leave personal care waste exposed for longer than they should before putting it into a macerator.
For these instances and many more, the UVMATIC® and UVMATIC® Plus air purifiers are the perfect solution to reduce airborne bacteria in your facility.
Completely automated and chemical free, the UVMATIC® and UVMATIC® Plus draw in polluted air and treat it using UV light, ozone and negative ions.
UVMATIC® air purifiers are proven to destroy viruses such as influenza as well as E.coli, salmonella and similar bacteria – providing the reassurance you need.
In addition, you should always be mindful of your maceration.
When using a macerator for human waste disposal, it’s important to be aware that clinicians could be exposed to airborne bacteria. You must take appropriate measures to prevent this.
When a macerator has been filled with used waste containers, many models require the clinician to lean over the open drum to close the lid, potentially exposing the clinician to lingering bacteria in the air.
This isn’t the case with DDC Dolphin macerators, which can be set to close automatically – dramatically reducing exposure to airborne particles.
The right macerator won’t just reduce exposure to airborne viruses. It will prevent them from spreading, too.
All current macerator models from DDC Dolphin feature MicrobeSafe+ antimicrobial technology.
MicrobeSafe+ is a silver-based antimicrobial additive, mixed with a powerful antifungal accompaniment.
When a germ lands on a surface impregnated with MicrobeSafe+, the micro-organism is destroyed or damaged, rendering it unable to reproduce. MicrobeSafe+ provides excellent passive protection against airborne pathogens and – better yet – contributes to the overall reduction in virus transmission.
Keen to find out more about how DDC Dolphin can help your facility to fight coronavirus?
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