Could an Air Sampler Help Detect Airbone Coronavirus Particles?

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Could an Air Sampler Help Detect Airbone Coronavirus Particles?


Thermo Fisher Scientific also piloted the samplers at a Covid-19 field hospital in Worcester, Massachusetts. The hospital deployed the devices to patient care areas, where the virus was supposed to be detected, and to staff rest rooms, where it was not.

“Our cold spots were indeed cold,” said Dr. John Broach, emergency physician at UMass Memorial Medical Center and medical director of the field hospital. “And our hot zone was heavily contaminated, which was expected.”

Thermo Fisher Scientific, which will focus on hospitals in the first phase of its deployment, says other healthcare facilities could use the samplers to make sure their Covid protocols are working – and that the virus doesn’t come out of patient rooms.

“We see institutions asking if their planning and screening activities are effective?” said Mark Stevenson, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Thermo Fisher Scientific. “Are their cleaning and ventilation procedures adequate? And therefore, can I give my patients confidence when they visit the facility? “

Of course, detecting the virus in a Covid-19 patient’s hospital room is one thing, said Alex Huffman, an aerosol researcher at the University of Denver: “It’s another step in getting into an environment. which probably has even lower concentrations, watch a classroom or medical clinic where you don’t know if there will be someone positive or not. “

And an air sampler is not a silver bullet, said Mr Burke, who has made sure his firefighters continue to wear masks, socially distance themselves and undergo regular Covid testing even after installing the air sampler.

“It can’t be like a smoke detector in your house where you are, like, ‘I’m just going to have the machine, I’m not going to do anything else, it’ll let me know when there’s a problem,'” he said.

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