COVID-19 in Urgent Care Facilities & Family Practices
As COVID-19 continues to spread, more and more people are going to hospitals, urgent care facilities, family care practices, and pop-up centers to get tested. While this can help provide care to those affected, it also puts health workers, staff, and patients at a higher risk of catching the virus. Personal protective equipment (PPE), strict sanitation practices, and frequent hand washing can help limit the spread, but removing viruses and bacteria from the air can be a major factor, too. In urgent care facilities and doctors’ offices—where doctors, nurses, and staff all can come in close contact with the virus on a frequent basis—air filtration has never been more vital. Ensure the health and safety of our frontline workers by removing airborne viruses and bacteria and thoroughly cleaning the air with a Purafil filtration system.
How COVID-19 Spreads in Urgent Care Facilities & Doctors’ Offices
Every day a healthcare professional goes to work, whether it’s at a hospital, urgent care facility, or private practice, they are potentially exposed to COVID-19, which has been shown to stay airborne for up to three hours. The administrative staff is exposed when they sign in patients, doctors and nurses are exposed when they do testing, and any other staff is exposed simply by being in the facility. This makes transmission of the virus common, despite current precautions.
Aside from the constant exposure, a shortage of PPE can also make people in these environments susceptible. Without facemasks or gloves to help limit the spread, COVID-19 can spread quickly in an urgent care facility. Another problem is the sheer volume of people than can amass in these facilities. Some people may bring family members with them to get tested, which can quickly fill a waiting room, and if there’s a long wait, many people could be in close proximity to each other for extended periods of time.
Even though staff may be vigilant about sanitizing everything, patients who come into the doctor’s office, especially with kids, may not be. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) actually recommends that healthcare facilities try to do telemedicine as much as possible, encourage patients to receive at-home care, and find alternatives to face-to-face care. While these are effective suggestions, many urgent care facilities still remain open and find themselves on the front lines of a pandemic. Taking every precaution is necessary, and this includes cleaning the air.
The Link Between Air Pollution & COVID-19
Air pollution kills just over four million people a year, but now with COVID-19, the negative effects of air pollution will be amplified. Air pollution particles may be a vehicle for the transmission of the virus, according to researchers, and the results can be devastating.
A recent Harvard University study has shown that an increase in fine particulate matter (PM2.5) of just one microgram per cubic meter corresponded to a 15% increase in COVID-19 deaths. BBC explains why we’re seeing this impact: “The safe limit designated by the US’s Environmental Protection Agency is 12 micrograms PM2.5 per cubic [meter]. Parts of New York have annual PM2.5 levels consistently above this safe threshold. Researchers suggest that this could have played a part in the scale of New York State’s coronavirus outbreak.” This is why cleaning the air is such an important precautionary measure.
Why Clean Air Matters in Urgent Care Facilities & Doctors’ Offices
With a shortage in PPE, crowded facilities, and constant exposure to the virus, urgent care facilities, testing centers, and doctors’ offices can become breeding grounds for COVID-19. Even with constant sanitation and a HEPA filter, viruses and bacteria can still thrive. The best way to do so is to capture them from the air with protected and molecular filtration, and release clean air back into the room.
As the leader in air filtration, Purafil is happy to offer air filtration equipment that can help limit the spread of aerosols carrying viruses. Our filtration systems have been proven effective against targeted aerosols carrying viruses and bacteria. An innovative four-stage system is what makes the air filtration equipment so effective.
Our pre-filter catches large particles before moving air through a chemical filter. It utilizes molecular media that enables an oxidation process to remove aerosols carrying viruses and bacteria. For even further cleaning, we’ve added in A high efficiency PuraWard filter protected by an embedded micro-technology containing an EPA registered antimicrobial additive using copper and silver ions to combat many bacteria and viruses. The final stage includes a HEPA filter that cleans the air of of particulates as small as 0.3 microns before releasing the air back into the environment.
Purafil’s filtration systems help ensure that the air in the room is exceptionally clean, limiting the spread of airborne viruses in high-risk environments such as doctors’ offices and urgent care facilities. These systems are available in a variety of airflows and sizes, with all air filtration systems removing 99.99% of aerosols carrying viruses*. Ensure the health and safety of the frontline workers who are putting themselves at risk to keep the rest of us safe.
To learn more about Purafil’s air filtration equipment and how it can eliminate viruses and bacteria, visit our website.
*Laboratory testing demonstrated 99.99% reduction of aerosols carrying MS2. Copies of the full test reports are available upon request. † Filter protected by an EPA-registered antimicrobial additive. §Patent number US 9,370,763 B2