Comparison Test for Infection Control Barriers for Construction in Healthcare
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Understanding the extent of infection control measures to be taken to protect immunosuppressed and other types of patients from airborne infection agents during construction is crucial knowledge for both healthcare and construction professionals. The number of aspergillosis-related fatalities due to dust transmission during construction activity has decreased with the improvement of antifungal therapy, however the illness is particularly debilitating and the treatment is not always successful. This experimental work is the first stage in a research program to develop better dust controls for construction at existing medical facilities to reduce the incidence of dust borne fungi, such as Aspergillus spp. To better protect at-risk patients from exposure to Aspergillus spp. and other airborne fungal infections, an experiment was conducted to determine what materials can be used to create a barrier for infection control to moderate particle transmission from the construction area to the treatment area. This study investigated the relationship between construction barriers and particle transmission. A new experimental procedure and equipment simulates the transmission of disturbed dust from construction activity across a barrier. The effective of the barrier is determined from measured particle count on filter. The results show that an effective barrier manufactured from simple and readily available building supplies stops the transmission of 12-micron dust particles under a standard set of conditions. The test provides a simple and cost effective method to compare transmission rates for dust.
Bassett, Aimee (2013). Comparison Test for Infection Control Barriers for Construction in Healthcare. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from