The Benefit Of Pathogen Reduction Systems In Hospitals
In hospitals, robust Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems are critical. Not only for maintaining appropriate temperature and humidity regulation but also for keeping a clean, germ-free atmosphere that contributes to the wellbeing of patients and prevents the spread of disease. Because of these influencing factors, the design of air conditioning systems for hospitals must consider several criteria that, while important in other industries, must be given significant consideration here.
Transcool Systems, together with our partners at Pathogen Reduction Systems (PRS) can offer a unique bespoke solution for your HVAC installations. We provide UK manufactured solutions that optimise building efficiency, increase energy savings, reduce the potential of Healthcare Associated Infections (HAI) and deliver healthier facilities.
The Importance of Air Quality in Hospital Settings
Air conditioning in healthcare facilities serves a far larger purpose than merely providing comfort to patients and personnel. Medical equipment in hospitals and healthcare institutions can often be sensitive to temperature and humidity, not to mention the impact of air quality on bacteria and germs. For these reasons, precise air control plays an important role in hospital settings. However, the diverse needs of various rooms within a hospital adds to the complexity of an HVAC system’s design.
In a hospital, rooms must be provided for patients with various pathologies to be treated and rested. Among them, a group will have infectious-contagious diseases, which require a certain level of isolation. Other rooms will require an equally high focus on air filtration and quality, such as intensive care rooms, neonatal rooms, and operating theatres.
It goes without saying that hospitals have a much higher concentration of pathogens than the average building, and most of these agents travel in the air currents, making air conditioning equipment particularly susceptible to accumulating large amounts of pathogens and even serving as breeding grounds for them, posing a health risk to users. However, all of this may be avoided by properly designing a bespoke HVAC and Pathogen Reduction System so that patients, hospital staff, and visitors are not exposed to germs.
What Makes A Robust Hospital HVAC System?
It would be possible to write a small novel about the multitude of considerations in designing a reliable, robust HVAC system and Pathogen Reduction System for a hospital. Instead, let’s consider four of the most important.
UTAS and Handlers
Units must be finished in a sanitary manner, which inhibits the growth of germs, aids in the control of air quality, and facilitates cleansing. There must be no holes or wrinkles that could allow water to condense. Interior surfaces must be coated with epoxy or polyester paint or made of stainless steel and manufactured so that the various elements (filters, dampers, heat exchanger batteries, etc.) may be removed individually for cleaning. Condensation trays must be removable, made of stainless steel, and have enough insulation to prevent the production of further condensate.
Sick people’s immune systems are at their weakest in rooms or operating rooms. A high-level filtration system plays a key role in protecting them from germs, viruses, and other airborne illnesses. HEPA-filtered HVAC systems trap infectious particles, contain bacteria, and keep airborne infections from spreading to your most vulnerable patients.
Ventilation is another important factor to consider when designing air conditioning systems in hospitals, particularly operating theatres, both from the standpoint of air quality control and energy efficiency. Ventilation is one of the highest energy expenditures in this sort of system, which is why it’s so important that yours functions efficiently.
Pathogen reduction systems
An additional inclusion that can be utilised in modern hospitals is the Pathogen Reduction System that uses cutting-edge technology to inactivate airborne viruses like SARS-COV-2 from air that is mechanically cycled throughout buildings. PRS solutions provide significantly more UVC radiation than is required to inactivate COVID-19 and will also neutralise TB, MRSA, and Influenza, as well as very small viruses like Measles.
Bespoke PRS Units
At Transcool Systems, we can retrofit existing HVAC systems and install bespoke PRS air units, manufactured to suit the required volume and speed of airflow of your existing air-handling systems.
Any air-conditioning system which operates with recirculation can be fitted with a Pathogen Reduction System. It can be installed in large ducts situated in AHU plant rooms or smaller ducts within MVHR systems.
We can install units tailored to the exact size of ducting, and then the UVC radiation levels are calibrated to suit the volume and speed of air to be treated.
Would you like to discuss improving the air quality in your hospital with a bespoke Pathogen Reduction System? Call Transcool Systems today and speak with a member of the team.
- PRS is a headline sponsor and keynote speaker at the Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) two-day conference and exhibition being held at the NCC in Birmingham on April 26/27, 2022. Prof Rob McCullough (PRS Chief Scientist) will be the keynote speaker on the first day (26 April) at 10.40am. You can book your tickets for the conference here.