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COVID-19 News - U.S. CDC - Indoor Air Guidance For COVID-19  Jun 06, 2023  8 months, 3 weeks, 16 hours, 8 minutes ago

Despite U.S. CDC Releasing Indoor Air Guidance For COVID-19 Rather Late, Buildings, Owners, Managements And Officials Are Not Taking Heed!

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Despite U.S. CDC Releasing Indoor Air Guidance For COVID-19 Rather Late, Buildings, Owners, Managements And Officials Are Not Taking Heed!
COVID-19 News - U.S. CDC - Indoor Air Guidance For COVID-19  Jun 06, 2023  8 months, 3 weeks, 16 hours, 8 minutes ago
COVID-19 News: Despite the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) finally unveiling the long-awaited indoor air guidance for COVID-19 on the 12th of May 2023, more than three years into the pandemic, many buildings and officials seem to be turning a blind eye!
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/ventilation.html
 


The CDC's new ventilation guidance aims to curb the indoor transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus by emphasizing the need for complete air replacement at least five times per hour. Additionally, the guidance recommends the use of minimum efficiency reporting value (MERV)-13 air filters for cleaning the indoor air. This is the first time that the CDC has released health-based ventilation targets specifically tailored to respiratory pathogens.
 
Dr Joseph G Allen, the director of the Healthy Buildings Program at Harvard University, who played a key role in shaping the guidance recommendations, told COVID-19 News reporters at TMN, “This indoor air guidance for COVID-19 can be hailed as evidence-based, practical, feasible, and applicable to various settings such as offices, homes, schools, airports, and coffee shops, it is easily adoptable.”
 
However, despite the importance of this guidance, many buildings and offices remain resistant to implementing these crucial measures.
 
The delay in releasing such guidance during the early stages of the pandemic may have cost lives, as poor indoor air quality has significant implications for public health. It was only in October 2020, nearly a year into the pandemic, that the U.S. CDC acknowledged the airborne nature of the coronavirus. The criticism surrounding this delay highlights the importance of prioritizing indoor air quality and the need for continued investment in public health and pandemic prevention efforts.
 
While the U.S. CDC's guidance is a significant step forward, it remains voluntary for building owners and operators. Compliance with the recommended ventilation and filtration measures will require financial investment and equipment upgrades.
 
Experts emphasize that significant mechanical upgrades are needed in most buildings, along with ongoing financial support and effective implementation strategies.
 
The benefits of improving indoor air quality go beyond reducing COVID-19 transmission. By adopting the U.S. CDC's guidance, we can also mitigate the spread of influenza and other respiratory viruses while minimizing people's exposure to indoor air pollutants. Moreover, this proactive approach can lead to a reduction in asthma exacerbations and potentially enhance cognitive function at work and school.
 
Critics argue that the cost of implementing these measures should not be a deterrent, as improved ventilation can be "essentially cost neutral or even put money back in the pockets of a building's owner." By investing in healthy buildings, we can simultaneously improve air quality, conserve energy, and work towards achieving climate goals. It is essential to recognize that the green building movement and th e healthy building movement are not mutually exclusive but rather two sides of the same coin.
 
To maximize the impact of the U.S. CDC's guidance, widespread adoption is necessary. The use of MERV-13 filters, which remove up to 90% of airborne particles, should become the norm, particularly in households without tobacco smoking. Additionally, buildings should strive for a minimum of five air changes per hour, as recommended by the CDC. These simple yet powerful measures can significantly reduce the transmission of not only COVID-19 but also other respiratory illnesses including potential threats from a H5N1 or other new influenza outbreak.
 
Moving forward, there is hope that the CDC guidance will serve as a catalyst for the establishment of formal government regulations. While the US Environmental Protection Agency currently lacks the authority to regulate indoor air quality, the CDC's recommendations could pave the way for future enforceable standards. However, without proper financial support and a commitment to implementation, the potential benefits of this guidance may remain unrealized.
 
As the world navigates the post-pandemic era, it is crucial to prioritize indoor air quality as an integral part of public health and safety. The CDC's guidance serves as a wake-up call to governments, businesses, and individuals to take proactive measures to ensure healthy indoor environments.
 
There are also other newer air-disinfecting protocols using far UVC and blue light technology that should also be considered in indoor usage along with the usage of ozone for disinfection during closure of premises when there are no people around.
 
While the CDC's recommendations are a significant step forward, they should only be the beginning. Governments and regulatory bodies must seize this opportunity to develop and enforce comprehensive standards for indoor air quality. By setting clear guidelines and providing the necessary resources and support, we can ensure that buildings, schools, and public spaces prioritize the health and well-being of their occupants.
 
Furthermore, businesses and building owners should recognize the long-term benefits of investing in healthy buildings. Improved ventilation and filtration systems not only reduce the risk of disease transmission but also enhance overall productivity and well-being. By creating environments that prioritize the health and comfort of employees and customers, businesses can foster a positive and sustainable work culture.
 
Individuals also have a role to play in advocating for healthier indoor environments. By being informed and proactive, we can demand that our workplaces, schools, and public spaces adhere to recommended ventilation and filtration standards. This collective effort can create a groundswell of support for healthy building practices, leading to widespread adoption and implementation.
 
The COVID-19 pandemic is not yet over and as we face more threats from other emerging respiratory disease-causing viruses and pathogens, let us not forget the lessons learned. The importance of indoor air quality and its impact on public health should remain at the forefront of our collective consciousness. By recognizing the interconnection between our health, the environment, and the spaces we inhabit, we can create a healthier, more resilient future.
 
For the latest COVID-19 News, keep on logging to Thailand Medical News.
 
Read Also:
 
https://www.thailandmedical.news/news/u-s-study-shows-that-upper-room-germicidal-ultraviolet-c-irradiation-ur-guv-devices-effective-in-eradicating-aerosolized-sars-cov-2-in-enclosed-areas
 
https://www.thailandmedical.news/news/british-study-confirms-that-ozone-gas-is-effective-for-sars-cov-2-disinfection
 
https://www.thailandmedical.news/news/far-uvc-columbia-university-researchers-show-that-far-uvc-light-kills-99-9-percent-of-airborne-coronaviruses-while-being-safe-for-humans
 
https://www.ashrae.org/about/news/2023/ashrae-completes-draft-of-first-ever-pathogen-mitigation-standard
 
https://www.thailandmedical.news/articles/covid-19-disinfectants

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