Sanitising ambulances, a study by Italian researchers on the use of ultraviolet rays
Ambulance sanitisation remains a major public health and emergency health worker issue, even now that the COVID-19 pandemic
Ultraviolet sanitisation system for sterilising ambulance fleets and monitoring their sterilisation level in real time
In this study, a group of Italian researchers from the Istituto Superiore della Sanità (ISS) examines a rather fashionable sanitisation method and assesses its effects on ambulances and the health of their operators.
“Contamination of ambulances,’ it says, ‘with pathogens represents a potential public health threat, not only for common pathogens but also for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).
The aim of this project was to exploits the germicidal effect of the UVC radiation at 254 nm to sanitize the patient’s compartment of ambulances with an advanced UltraViolet SANitizing System (UV-SAN) and assess its relevance for avoiding the spread of COVID-19 and other drug resistant pathogens.
The system is equipped with UVC lamps that are activated when the ambulance compartment is empty and sanitize the environment in less than 15 min.
An Ozone sensor continuously monitors the gas concentration, ensuring it does not exceed threshold value harmful for patients and operators’ health.
The system is relying on GNSS data and a satellite communication link, which allow to monitor and record traceability (when, where and what) of all the sanitation operations performed.
This information is real-time monitored from a dedicated web-application.
UVC irradiation efficiently reduced SARS-CoV-2 virus titer (>99.99%), on inanimate surfaces such as plastic, stainless steel or rubber, with doses ranging from 5.5 to 24.8 mJ/cm2 and the UV-SAN system is effective against multi drug resistant (MDR) bacteria up to >99.99%, after 10 to 30 min of irradiation.
Conclusions: UV-SAN can provide rapid, efficient and sustainable sanitization procedures of ambulances”.