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In June of this year, OSHA conducted a review of the latest COVID-19 science, data, and guidance. After consulting with the CDC, OSHA issued an emergency temporary standard (ETS) for employers working in healthcare and healthcare support services. However, despite the name “COVID-19 Healthcare ETS” the rule applies to any organization that provides first aid services. This could include schools as well. Whether your business falls into these categories or not, proper ventilation is a key part of fighting the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. As a result, HVAC assessments play a critical role.
Your COVID-19 Plan
The ETS recommends provisions for physical barriers, training, and ventilation. While this guidance affects health care facilities and schools, all businesses should take note. It is one of the many reasons employers need to develop a COVID-19 plan for the workplace.
A COVID plan should include steps to prevent the spread of the virus. This includes maintaining social distancing, creating safer traffic patterns in the building as well as conducting HVAC assessments. Plans should include screening building occupants and visitors and allowing employees time off to get vaccinated. Employers must also educate staff on COVID transmission, safety procedures, risks, and review sick leave policies.
Of course, proper ventilation is an essential part of preventing the spread of COVID. Therefore, HVAC assessments should be a part of any COVID-19 plan.
Pure Air Control’s Building Health Check is an evaluation of mold, allergen, and dust. It also logs wall and floor moisture as well as temperature and humidity levels. The final piece of our evaluation includes an HVAC Hygiene Assessment. This measures the impact a building system has on Indoor Air Quality (IAQ). Proper ventilation dilutes the SARS-CoV-2 virus so outdated systems put building occupants at risk. Likewise, as systems become dirty over time their performance also decreases which also creates risk.
An HVAC Hygiene Assessment includes a visual inspection of the air handling unit (AHU). This includes looking at the evaporator coils, drain pan, blower, and all corresponding duct work. Our Building Sciences team tests the samples collected from within the AHU for airflow and energy efficiency. Building pressure analysis, air filtration, and building airtightness also receive an evaluation. Our Environmental Diagnostics Library also tests for the presence of bacteria and fungi.
The resulting report from the HVAC assessment gives facilities managers the data they need to improve conditions. It’s just one part of our services that address the five pillars of healthy IAQ. Those pillars include inspecting and testing, cleaning and restoring HVAC systems, reducing particles in the ductwork, destroying pathogens, and using air-cleaning technologies such as bipolar ionization.
The Importance of Monitoring IAQ Conditions
HVAC assessments are not a one-in-done approach. Improved ventilation creates healthier IAQ to combat the spread of viruses, but monitoring of environmental conditions is needed to prevent a return to unhealthy air conditions. This is done through 24/7 monitoring with our IAQ Guard service. IAQ Guard monitors environmental conditions including changes to temperature and relative humidity, levels of total volatile organic compounds (TVOC), as well as CO2 and other gasses.
Improved ventilation has many benefits. Our assessments and the resulting remediation efforts create healthier building conditions. Even as our services protect building occupants they have the added benefit of cutting energy costs. This strengthens the bottom line of any business.
Schedule HVAC Assessments Today
Whether you are a healthcare service, school, or another private company, protecting the health of building occupants is critical. Call Pure Air Control Services today to schedule an HVAC assessment. We help businesses create healthy buildings. We do this through services that include inspection and testing, cleaning and disinfection, as well as around the clock monitoring of environmental conditions. Call us at 1-800-422-7873 or email us here.