HVAC solution provider, E-CO UK, is calling on CIBSE (Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers) to recognise the industry’s role in reducing the spread of bacteria and infection.
Hillary Spicer, director of E-CO UK, said that urgent action was needed to assist the fight against air-borne infections. Mr Spicer said: “As the standard setter, CIBSE should take the lead and ensure the industry is safeguarding the people who live, work or use the buildings where heating and air conditioning systems are present.
“Despite overwhelming evidence, many industry professionals in the UK fail to recognise that HVAC systems contribute to the spread of infections. This is putting lives at risk, increasing the chances of health & safety related litigation and preventing the industry from working with the simple solutions that are available.”
Air is said to be typically around 200 to 500 per cent more polluted in buildings than it is outdoors. Many infectious diseases, including healthcare associated infections, such as MRSA and c.diff, can be spread through a building’s ventilation systems.
E-CO UK says air-conditioning operators can help to stop this spread of air-borne infections by installing Ultraviolet C Germicidal Irradiation (UVGI) in the air handling system. UVC kills any bacteria or virus regardless of its type and could be used as a tool to counter superbug mutation.
The company also claim ASHRAE (American Society of Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Engineers) officially recognises the role of ventilation systems in the spread of infectious diseases and the role of UVC technologies to mitigate this. E-CO UK is challenging CIBSE to follow ASHRAE’s lead and make a commitment to supporting measures that will help improve the air quality in buildings and the health of those occupying them.
Hillary Spicer added: “UVC kills any bacteria or virus regardless of its type and would act as a tool to counter superbug mutation. With our health services stretched to the limit, antibiotics proving ineffective in fighting infection, and rates of viruses reaching record numbers, it’s time for the industry to catch up with our US counterparts and take notice. This must first start with recognition of the industries role from CIBSE.”