Presentation Title: Real-World Implementation of UV N95 Mask Decontamination in the Hospital Setting
Author Name(s): Nathan J. Alves, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Emergency Medicine
Author Department and School Affiliation: Indiana University School of Medicine
Abstract: Since the onset of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19) in December of 2019 there has been >4.6 million infected and >155,000 associated deaths in the US alone. The rapidly evolving healthcare crisis resulting from hospital systems exceeding capacity in addition to limited access to the necessary personal protective equipment (PPE) created unique challenges. Hospital networks took drastic steps to protect frontline providers and patients and mitigate PPE shortages by leveraging systems for decontaminating and reusing what once were considered to be single use disposable items. Of critical importance, are N95 surgical masks that are rated to filter >95% of 0.3 µm particles and were used heavily in the early phases of the pandemic and have since been restricted for use only during aerosol generating procedures. This poster will focus on the implementation and validation of an ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI, 254nm) system used to decontaminate N95 masks for the downtown IU Health hospital system. Details regarding the design and building of a PVC mask holding rack (9’ wide X 6’ tall), placement of UVGI Surfacide tower emitters, UV field intensity mapping (colorimetric and UVC radiometers), and MRSA contaminated mask kill testing will all be discussed.
Keywords: N95 Mask, decontamination, ultraviolet irradiance