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Bioaerosol production from routine activities within a hospital ward

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Instructions for contributions - Abstract Bioaerosol production from routine activities within a hospital ward Abigail Hathway1,*, Louise Fletcher1, Cath Noakes1, Andrew Sleigh1, Mark Elliot2 and Ian Clifton2 1Pathogen Control Engineering, School of Civil Engineering, University of Leeds 2St James’s University Hospital, Leeds *Corresponding email: [email protected] Keywords: Hospital acquired infection, Bio-aerosols, Skin squame, Staphylococcus aureus Introduction The ability of a human to shed bacteria, including the pathogen Staphylococcus aureus on skin particles during activities has been well documented by many authors (e.g. Davies and Noble, 1962). The majority of these studies consider only specific activities, often in controlled conditions and for short time periods. To understand how these releases may impact on infection control it is necessary to understand how the bio-aerosol concentration fluctuates with activities on a typical day in a hospital ward. For this reason the authors carried out a scoping study in 2004 on a respiratory ward and found large variation with bio-aerosol concentrations over the day (Roberts et al., 2006). The current work builds on this previous study and aims to establish whether the activity of staff on a ward can be statistically correlated to bio-aerosol concentrations. Fluctuations on multiple days are compared in order to identify typical patterns of release. Methods The study was carried out over seven days on a 4 bed bay of a respiratory ward between 8am and 4pm. The air was sampled to determine a total viable count of bacteria using a Micro-bio MB2 sampler. Particles in five size ranges; 0.3- 0.5μm, 0.5-1μm, 1-3μm, 3-5μm and >5μm, were sampled using a Kanomax laser particle counter. The particles were summed over 15 minute periods. Within this same period the number of hospital staff within the bay were summed and multiplied by the number of minutes present. Bio-aerosols were s

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