HVAC systems in healthcare facilities have become critical components over the last six months as managers have sought to stop the spread of the coronavirus and protect patients and staff. As the pandemic moves into its second year, managers now must incorporate lessons learned into the design of future facilities.
Several studies have indicated that COVID-19 can spread via aerosol transmission, meaning that control over airflows in healthcare facilities is critical, according to Hospital and Healthcare.
Simon Witts, principal engineer at LCI Consultants with more than 34 years’ experience in health building design, says it’s important for healthcare facilities managers to consider what a facility is trying to achieve. Guidelines need to be followed for critical care areas in relation to airflow systems, and it’s important not to make a knee-jerk reaction and design everything for the current pandemic at the expense of other functions. Facility designs need to in-build system flexibility.