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IAQ Concerns at a Medical Building

Posted on June 30, 2014
by Susana Escamilla



Indoor air quality in any medical building is very important because you have to take into consideration the health of many patients. The healthcare industry has strict procedures for hospitals and medical offices in order to create a healthy and comfortable environment for everyone inside the building. Recently, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) issued a health evaluation report for a medical office building. Employees working at the medical office building were concerned about the indoor air quality in the building. In addition, also concerned about being exposed to hydrogen sulfide,which is a component of sewer gas. This incident and concern is a health hazard for the employees and the rest of the staff who work in the medical office building. The concern started when employees kept smelling sewer gas odors and complaint about the odors.

Several steps were taken in order to pin point the issues. NIOSH measured hydrogen sulfide through out the building, inspected the buildings HVAC system, temperature, humidity levels, and measured carbon dioxide in the building. NIOSH found several problems in the buildings ventilation system and the carbon dioxide concentrations were above the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) guidelines who focus on the building systems for the human well being using sustainable technology. Once NIOSH found out what the problem was, building management took action and drain tap devices were installed on all floor drains, HVAC components were inspected and repaired, sewer lines were repaired and manholes were sealed and replaced with rain guard devices.

As a result, odor complaints decreased in the medical building. This was a important example of why it is important to be alert of your work environment and let others know when you are concern about the indoor air quality in your environment. We are strong advocates of building and sustaining a healthy indoor environment for many industries. At Airtek, we have been creating cleaner, healthier and more energy-efficient indoor environments for 25 years. We have several solutions for the healthcare industry. Airtek provides indoor air quality management, preventative maintenance solutions, and portable containment products for airborne particulates, infection control, and bio-security.

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