Pathogen loading and environmental conditions found in hospital building drainage system wastewater and airflows

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

The primary aim of a building drainage system (BDS)is to remove waste from a building in a timely and safemanner. Safety, in the main, focuses attention on ensuringthe integrity of water trap seals through the air ventingsystem and pressure alleviation strategy adopted in thedesign. Previous research has described the sonar-liketechnique developed to ensure that depleted water trapseals can be detected and defects rectified to ensure thatmaximum levels of protection are afforded by the BDS.While the technology has been effectively validated by acombination of laboratory investigation, site testing andnumerical simulation; the rationale for the need to monitorwater trap seals is less obvious to professionals operating inthis field. This research reports on a pilot study to quantifythe pathogen loading of waste water effluent from thecollection drain at the Royal Infirmary Edinburgh (RIE) andattempts to trace pathogens in the airflow found in buildingdrainage systems. In effect the research seeks to identify apossible cross-contamination route from patient to infectedfaeces to collection drain waste water effluent to buildingdrainage air flow. In conjunction with the identification ofpathogen by type and species, the airflow rate and direction(up and down), temperature and humidity were recordedto give a holistic view of the environmental conditions inwhich harmful pathogens can survive. Strong positives fornorovirus were detected from samples in the collection draincorresponding to an outbreak in the building, confirmingthat the BDS is contaminated in such circumstances andposes a significant threat.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of 37th International Symposium CIB W062 on Water Supply and Drainage for Buildings
Subtitle of host publication25 – 28th September 2011 - Aveiro, Portugal
EditorsArmando B. Silva Afonso
PublisherAssociação Nacional para a Qualidade nas Instalações Prediais
Pages287-292
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)978-989-97476-0-9
Publication statusPublished - 22 Sep 2011
Event37th International Symposium CIB W062 on Water Supply and Drainage for Buildings 2011 - Aveiro, Portugal
Duration: 25 Sep 201128 Sep 2011
Conference number: 37

Conference

Conference37th International Symposium CIB W062 on Water Supply and Drainage for Buildings 2011
CountryPortugal
CityAveiro
Period25/09/1128/09/11

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