Engineering Control of Airborne Disease Transmission in Health Care Facilities
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Hospital acquired illness or “nosocomial” illness is of increasing concern to public health administrators, hospitals, physicians and patients. Engineering infection control measures are used to reduce the concentration and prevent the spread of these particles throughout a building in order to decrease exposure to and risk of illness from infectious pathogens. The engineer who attempts to deal with microbial indoor air quality finds that pertinent microbiological information exists in abundance but not in easily digestible forms. This paper will provide a brief review of the problem of controlling airborne disease transmission in healthcare facilities with emphasis on medical microbiology and aerobiology in order to offer some conclusions regarding the potential for engineering control of infectious diseases.