Is it Time to Put a Face-Mask on our Air Conditioning Unit?
Is there no safe space anymore? Is our AC unit spreading COVID-19?
Can it be true that our air conditioning unit may be contributing to the spread of coronavirus? Yes, says Harvard epidemiologist, Dr. Edward Nardell, a professor in the Departments of Environmental Health and Immunology and Infectious Diseases at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
Dr. Nardell says people are heading indoors to cool down from the heat and humidity while being outside is safer. The next problem is that the AC unit isn't bringing in very much outside air, which is more of a problem in the corporate setting. The third issue is that once people are indoors, they aren't social distancing themselves from others.
Dr. Nardell says, "You are not socially distanced as much, but you're re-breathing the same air that someone else just exhaled, we call it re-breathed air fraction, and if someone is infectious, often asymptomatic, you're going to be re-breathing their small particles."
Dr. Nardell goes on to say that germicidal lamps have been proven effective in protecting against tuberculosis infection and are already being used to fight COVID-19 and can be done cheaply.
A team of researchers at the University of Houston say they have a cheaper, more efficient solution.