Air Quality in Health Care Facilities: Protecting Patients and Health Care Workers

Air Quality in Healthcare Facilities: Protecting Patients and Health Care Workers

By Dr. Margaret Scarlett

After more than three years, SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, is not the prevailing health concern of Americans. On May 11, 2023, at 11:59 pm, the Public Emergency due to COVID-19 is officially over. (1) What have we learned in these three years? Can’t we just go back to the way it was before the epidemic began in 2020? The answer is NO.

We must go forward. There is no going back. We have learned a lot about respiratory infections in this time period. We have learned enough to provide better respiratory protection for both patients and healthcare workers in healthcare facilities. In the healthcare setting, we learned that bloodborne pathogen standards are necessary, but insufficient, to protect both patients and healthcare workers. We learned that more must be done.

The grim statistics let us know the problems. By April 2023, more than 1.6 million Americans have died due to COVID-19, pneumonia, and influenza since the start of the epidemic. (2) All of these are respiratory diseases. The toll among healthcare workers has been high as well, with increased risks of exposure, and higher deaths than the general
population. (3)

There are numerous guidelines, including droplet guidelines, just not airborne transmission guidance…YET. But there will be. Are you ready? While OSHA has yet to release a standard, increased vigilance in infection control is one significant outcome of COVID-19. Early indicators are that OSHA is likely to include air quality in healthcare facilities. We have learned that enclosed spaces carry a higher risk for the acquisition of respiratory infections. Meanwhile, the Association of Heating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) released an updated position paper on infectious aerosols in October 2022. We are trying to catch up.

Numerous organizations are addressing this issue, including the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. Enclosed spaces in health care settings, and also in transportation, public buildings, and meatpacking industries are being considered.

Droplet transmission guidelines are not enough, we have learned. Aerosol transmission is a concern. For healthcare settings, one nosocomial infection outbreak reported was among six healthcare workers, three of whom did not have direct contact with a child or his mother. No aerosol-generating procedures were performed, and the child was asymptomatic. The child did not cough, sneeze, cry or talk. Yet, the healthcare workers were infected even though more than six feet away from the source of the infected child patient.

All six wore surgical masks and most were at a distance of 6 feet or more without any direct contact. Three did not contact any shared equipment or surfaces. (4) What happened? We have learned that air contains an infective virus, and when the viral load is enough to accessible tissues like the nasal membranes, aerosols can transmit this respiratory disease, COVID-19, from a distance. Droplet or contact transmission just cannot explain this away. Air quality is important.


Dr. Margaret ScarlettDr. Margaret Scarlett is a public health expert in infectious diseases and infection control. Retired from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as a Commissioned Corps Officer of the US Public Health Service, Dr. Scarlett is now a consultant to healthcare, hospitals, and outpatient health facilities. Focusing on improved health outcomes over the last 20 years, she has provided leadership, developed and implementing strategies to reduce morbidity and mortality, due to preventable illness. In addition to the US Department of Health and Human Services, Dr. Scarlett provides expertise to the World Health Organization, eight Ministries of Health, the US Department of State, the US Agency for International Development, numerous states and local health departments, and CDC. Click here to learn more.


      2. National Center for Health Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (CDC).  Provisional Death Counts for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
      3. Lin S, Deng X, Ryan I, et al. COVID-19 Symptoms and Deaths among Healthcare Workers, United States. Emerging Infectious Diseases. 2022;28(8):1624-1641. doi:10.3201/eid2808.212200.
      4. Goldberg L, Levinsky Y, Marcus N, Hoffer V, Gafner M, Hadas S, Kraus S, Mor M, Scheuerman O. SARS-CoV-2 Infection Among Health Care Workers Despite the Use of Surgical Masks and Physical Distancing-the Role of Airborne Transmission. Open Forum Infect Dis. 2021 Jan 27;8(3):ofab036. doi: 10.1093/ofid/ofab036. PMID: 33732749; PMCID: PMC7928680.

Independent Lab Tests Prove CASPR Beats Competitors

Air and Surface Disinfection Company’s Units Show Up to 99% Pathogen Reduction vs. Competitors’ 45% Reduction


DALLAS – March 29, 2022 — Environmental health technology company CASPR Technologies has beat two competing technologies in independent laboratory testing. Kansas-based Aerosol Research and Engineering (ARE) Laboratories tested CASPR technology against air and surface purification units from two other companies and found that CASPR Tech’s models topped out at a 99% reduction in pathogens compared to its competitors’ 45% reduction.

CASPR – which stands for Continuous Air & Surface Pathogen Reduction – uses proprietary Natural Catalytic Conversion (NCC™) technology, which uses photocatalysts to convert the moisture in the ambient air into low levels of gaseous hydrogen peroxide. These highly effective oxidizing molecules blanket the surface of the targeted area and eliminate air and surface pathogens, including bacteria such as MRSA and viruses such as influenza and SARS-CoV-2. Competitor A uses a photocatalytic process with different catalytic coatings and light frequencies than the NCC™ technology that may generate different chemical outputs and contaminants. Competitor B uses a process called bipolar ionization to produce positive and negative ions.

The FDA-compliant laboratory conducted testing on four newly manufactured disinfection units: two CASPR Technologies models, and two competing models. The two CASPR Tech models used were CASPR PRO 2500 and CASPR MEDIK 14”, which have been widely used for years in business. All four units were tested in a 16m3 stainless steel bioaerosol chamber using a partial duct HVAC system and were designed to operate in 2,000-square foot spaces. Each unit was placed in the chamber and given 16 hours to reduce pathogens in the air and on surfaces. The pathogen was the same for all tests – MRSE, a common bacterium that serves as a surrogate for bacteria including MRSA.

The specific results:

    • CASPR Pro 2500 reduced pathogens by 93.6%
    • CASPR MEDIK 14” reduced pathogens by 99.0%
    • Competitor A’s photocatalytic unit reduced pathogens by 45.5%
    • Competitor B’s bipolar ionization unit reduced pathogens by 45.6%

“Independent testing is the only way to know what truly works. The value proposition of the NCC™ technology continues to prove that it is the best path forward when talking about reducing pathogens on surfaces and in the air,” said CASPR Technologies co-founder Dr. Christophe Suchy, who invented the technology. “The CASPR Tech products more than doubled the efficacy rate of their closest competitors. In the end, CASPR Tech’s customers win.”

CASPR Tech differs from other air purification technologies on the market in two important ways: First, the technology acts continuously, as opposed to a filter, which episodically cleans the air; and second, it also protects surfaces from harmful bacteria and viruses. CASPR’s revolutionary technology provides continuous intervention that delivers effective oxidizing molecules to all surfaces including walls and floors reducing bioburdens 24/7.

“In our independent study, the CASPR MEDIK 14” and CASPR Pro 2500 showed more than twice the efficacy of Competitors A and B in reducing the levels of MRSE found in the testing room,” said Andrew Dexter, the staff research scientist with ARE Labs who conducted the testing. “These results suggest that NCC™ technology performs better than bipolar ionization and photocatalytic processes at reducing pathogens.”

About CASPR Technologies

CASPR (Continuous Air & Surface Pathogen Reduction) Technologies is a health-tech company on a mission to make the world indoors a better place. As the leader in smart environmental indoor technology, our solutions work to ensure the air we breathe is the healthiest it can be, living out our well-being and enhancing our performance in the process. Our award-winning, patent pending NCC™ technology proactively and continuously disinfects indoor air and surfaces at the molecular level. Our innovative and proprietary products are low-maintenance, completely automated, and do not depend on pathogens “cycling” through filters to be effective. With CASPR Technologies: live, breathe, and work with safer air and surfaces around the clock. To learn more, visit

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