Year 2020 has started with a ill starred severe acute respiratory virus (SARS-CoV-2)” and disease named as COVID-19, creating massive pressure on healthcare infrastructure as well as on healthcare management globally with each passing day.
It has been observed that COVID-19 spread between people through close contact. There is neither vaccine nor specific antiviral treatment for COVID-19. To reduce transmission through air there is an immediate need of “Isolation Rooms” in the area of highly populated densities. This blog will discuss “how we can examine contamination extent with a convenient ventilation strategic design using CFD analysis”. During designing HVAC systems for the isolation rooms, CFD evaluates air flow patterns and contaminant transport. This blog will put your heads together about different configurations of supply and exhaust location inside the isolation room.
Isolation rooms aim to control flow of air inside the room so that airborne contaminants are reduced to the intensity that should not allow cross infection of other people.
Following plan of action is used for the rooms-:
- Maintain a negative pressure gradient.
- Set up an anteroom with each room with a pressure less than the close to ambient pressure.
- Provide 100% outside air ventilation-HEPA filters etc.
- Put a Non-hand clinical hand basin within the patient room and anteroom.
Construction of Isolation Rooms
Typical isolation rooms are imparted with ante-room and an attached washroom connected with patient room and corridor. In principle, contamination can be maximized within a suite by-:
- Maximizing the contamination within the patient room.
- Support a directional airflow from the anteroom to the patient room.
- Maintaining an excessive dilution rate in the anteroom.
- Support air flow from the corridor to the anteroom at all times.
The following picture illustrates pressure distinctive achieved in adjacent area is adjacent to isolation rooms:
Air Filter Efficiencies
Almost all the design standards speak favorable of installing pre filters prior to HEPA filters to prevent back draught. HEPA filters decrease the risk of virus infecting outside and helps in supporting effective fresh air changes per hour because using HEPA 99.97% of molecules with a diameter greater than 0.3 microns can be filtered. To examine this, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) is very useful in designing HVAC systems for the isolation rooms and also provides thermal comfort for the patient inside. The air flow path and diffusion of foreign matter for different supply and exhaust configuration using CFD.
CFD in Healthcare
The proper designed isolation room secures the safety of healthcare management providing treatment to the patients. As they expand in computational power, CFD comes out as a powerful design tool for HVAC engineers. DEINDE comes up with a support to HVAC designers, engineers in designing ventilation systems to reduce the consequences of COVID-19 pandemic.