Occupational Health and Infection Control

Coronavirus Preparedness and Response for Workplaces and Communities

C&IH offers occupational health consulting related to coronavirus (CoV) infection, transmission, and control. Our team of scientific experts provides guidance to help organizations plan, prevent, maintain, and decontaminate before, during, and after an outbreak, including:

  • Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (a.k.a. COVID 19)
  • Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS CoV)
  • Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome (MERS CoV)
  • Seasonal influenza or other disease outbreaks

The expertise of our staff in microbiology, toxicology, industrial hygiene, and ventilation and engineering controls enables C&IH to support your organization’s infection control practices with effective strategies for protecting patients, guests, workers, and their families.

Industrial Hygiene Services in Support of Biological Exposure and Infection Control

Exposure Monitoring for Biological Agents

  • Identify biological contaminants to direct infection control measures
    • Air monitoring and surface sampling for microbial contaminants

Building Assessment for Re-occupancy

  • Determine appropriate strategies for re-occupancy of temporarily shuttered buildings
    • Design and oversight of decontamination and disinfection activities
    • Design and implementation of post-decontamination testing, where appropriate, including air monitoring and/or surface sampling

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Guidance

  • Protect workers from exposure to biological agents through appropriate selection and correct use of PPE
    • Guidance on respiratory protection including
      • correct use and maintenance of respirators
      • proper fit testing
      • training of respiratory hazards requiring protection
      • administrative mechanisms to ensure that relevant respiratory protection-related medical examinations are performed
    • Guidance on proper selection and use of gloves, face shields, goggles, and gowns
    • Guidance on decontamination of re-usable PPE

Health and Safety Programs and Training

  • Develop and implement safe work practices to prevent biological agent exposure
    • Cleaning, disinfection, and sterilization procedures
    • Screening protocols for workplace access
    • Modifications to daily operations including process isolation, worker distancing, work shift rotations, etc.
    • Safely handling and transporting materials
    • Coronavirus hazard communication program development and training

Engineering Controls Assessment for Preventative Measures

  • Analyze gaps in existing controls to better minimize future contamination
    • Identify potential additions/improvements to contaminant control system
    • Determine the feasibility of retrofitting existing engineering control systems
    • Develop conceptual designs for new and retrofit systems

Ventilation and Contaminant Controls

  • Reduce biological exposure by controlling transmission
    • Specify filtered air/outdoor air
    • Contain contaminant generation (exhaust and isolation)
    • Establish and verify pressurization and depressurization
    • Specify local air purification (portable HEPA units, UVGI)
    • Develop ventilation system O&M procedures for maintenance personnel during outbreaks

Biological exposure and infection control consulting services provided by C&IH are based on state-of-the-art industrial hygiene practices and current federal regulations and guidelines from the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Centers for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO) and other relevant agencies. Our team of scientists has the knowledge and experience to help minimize the risk of disease and prevent its spread to others in healthcare settings and assisted living facilities, commercial office environments, and in various manufacturing, technology, and industrial operations.

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