More countries are rolling out and implementing vaccination plans for citizens. With more people getting vaccinated, normalcy is almost being restored. People are going about their regular lives, but with the necessary safety measures in place.
While the possibility of going back to normalcy is encouraging, there are still uncertainties about the best forms of prevention or protection to adopt against infections. There are still general concerns about the coronavirus and the possibility of new viruses coming up. There are also several questions about which technologies and products best fit this disease prevention strategy. And while several products claim effectiveness against COVID-19, it is difficult to confirm or debunk these claims.
Although it is safe to say there is light at the end of the tunnel, countries and health organizations must be prepared for future health crises. We don't know what comes next, but we must avoid being caught off guard as this pandemic did. When we return to those places we frequently visit - offices, shops, restaurants, and even hospitals, we must do so with the assurance of safety. The lockdown already showed us how it feels to be unable to access those locations due to safety concerns.
But the big question is, are we prepared for a post-pandemic world?
As we move closer to this new world, there is a strong case for UV-C to become more widely used in virus mitigation. We believe that this technology should be prominently featured in the national recovery plans of every country. UV-C is the next step to the new normal. Do you agree?
Technology for the new normal
The germicidal properties of ultraviolet light became known in 1877 when sunlight was discovered to inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria in test tubes left outside. A few years later, in 1930, a UV-C light with a wavelength of 254 nm was discovered to be a highly effective form of disinfection. Nowadays, UV-C light is being used to prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19.
The UV-C range is between 100 and 280 nanometers (nm) on the electromagnetic spectrum. UV-C light at 254 nm effectively degrades the DNA and RNA of viruses, bacteria, and mold spores. However, people and animals should avoid direct exposure to UV-C light at this wavelength since it can be harmful to the skin and eyes. UV-C light is only safe to use in a room with people present when properly installed as a UV-C disinfection upper air luminaire. This installation technique ensures the UV-C radiation is projected only at the upper part of the room. In essence, its use as an upper air disinfectant is 100% safe when installed adequately since these lighting fixtures are designed to redirect the UV-C light to the upper portion of the room, thereby not causing any harm to people present in the space. Learn more: What is UV Light and can it kill COVID-19?
UV-C has been shown to be highly effective against all pathogens tested so far, including SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. According to the National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories at Boston University, light sources irradiating the surface of a material inoculated with SARS-CoV-2 reduced the virus to undetectable levels in as little as 9 seconds for the dried virus and 4 seconds for the wet virus.
Preparing for the future - Clean air is a MUST.
As countries implement economic stimulus packages and embark on infrastructure projects, efforts should also go into making workplaces and public buildings safer. All hands must be on deck to ensure we are fully prepared for the unknowns of the future. After all, no one knows what virus will threaten us next.
Despite most office jobs transitioning into a remote setup, more workers are eager to return to the office – at least part-time. While some people prefer to work from home, others value the sense of community and collaboration that an office environment fosters.
However, this can only be realized if and when facility managers take various precautions to create a safe work environment with little or no risk of pathogens like COVID-19 thriving or spreading. Preventing airborne diseases in the workplace starts with taking care of the air itself.
Given the cost of sick days and the fact that employees are a company's most valuable asset, employers must take practical measures to protect their employees. And one of the best protective measures applicable here is incorporating UV-C technology into building codes such as upper-room germicidal ultraviolet (GUV).
Upper-room GUV lighting is a perfect technology for the current times, with states working on national resilience plans.
People would only be confident enough to return to their workplaces if they are assured of their safety. They must be convinced that the surfaces they touch and the air they breathe are 100% safe, whether there is a pandemic or not. The upper-room GUV lighting's exceptional disinfectant power comes into play here by bringing these convictions and more. It is, without a doubt, a technology for the new normal.
Upper-room GUV versus traditional/conventional HVAC systems and air purifiers
When UV is used in ducts, it ensures that recirculated air does not have viable pathogens. But that is the good part. Unfortunately, UV in ducts does relatively little to prevent immediate person-to-person transmission in a room where both an infectious source and other susceptible persons share the same air.
Air disinfection must occur in the same room as the transmission for effective and fast interruption of the transmission process. Most common air cleaners circulate indoor air and collect pollutants on filters, only to multiply and get released back into the air. Usually, they can effectively remove smoke, bad smell, and body odor of people, but that is almost all they can do.
Most expensive and known brand air purifiers use multiple filters, including ultraviolet UV-A and UV-B rays, to kill limited microorganisms like molds, bacteria, and even viruses. However, none of them uses GUV or other types of filters that can inactivate viruses like influenza or COVID-19. Learn more: 5 Things To Know About UVC Light And COVID-19.
Upper-room GUV lighting is a simple, economical, and functional way to make indoor spaces safe enough for the return of people. While it seems like we are already coming out of this pandemic with more people getting vaccinated, we must not conclude we are automatically safer. Breathing clean air is now the top priority, and we need to take care of ourselves much more than before to stay safe.
Learn more about UV-C lighting at www.clean-uvsolutions.com
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