Advanced Disinfection Solutions in the Fight Against Ebola

Advanced Disinfection Solutions in the Fight Against Ebola

The deployment of U.S. military resources and a large aid package to Liberia, one of the hardest-hit countries in the West African Ebola outbreak, will include desperately needed disinfection equipment and supplies. Personnel in regional healthcare facilities have been decimated by the virus, and effective response made impossible without even basic supplies such as gloves and disinfectant. Beyond the current response to the Ebola outbreak that touches upon the base deficiencies of healthcare in the developing world, companies that have developed hospital-acquired infection (HAI) solutions are now finding effective applications of their products towards Ebola and emergent infectious diseases.

Sterilizing and disinfecting the health facility, the equipment, furniture, instruments and all areas of patient and healthcare worker contact provide the best approach to preventing the spread of Ebola amongst health workers.  This in combination with proper hand washing techniques and procedures, screening and diagnosing, using low-risk equipment all play a vital role. Additional solutions include UV light, gamma ray and other high-energy irradiation capable of destroying or greatly reducing Ebola virus infectivity by mutating viral reproductive genes.

Two companies active in the health facility disinfection market - and profiled in Kalorama Information’s Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI) Control Markets - have already found ready application of their products in the fight against Ebola. Within the roughly $3.1 billion healthcare sterilization and disinfection market are Lumalier Corporation and Xenex Healthcare. Lumalier’s TRU-D SmartUVC system is a portable UV-based disinfection system that automatically adjusts UV dosage based on measured reflected UVC emissions. Lumalier deployed two such systems at hospitals in the Liberian capital, Monrovia earlier this month. Similar automated portable or “robot” systems - using pulsed Xenon UV light - were supplied by Xenex to Dr. P. Phillips Hospital, the CDC and Emory University to use in the vicinity of treatment for MERS- and Ebola-infected patients.  Both products - as well as other currently marketed systems - can expect to see increased demand as healthcare facilities worldwide invest in disease control solutions in response to heightened disease threats in a globalized world.