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Feasibility of ultraviolet light-emitting diode irradiation robot for terminal decontamination of COVID-19 patient rooms

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 March 2021

Hee Kyoung Choi
Affiliation:
Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, Korea University Ansan Hospital, Ansan, Republic of Korea
Chunguang Cui
Affiliation:
Department of Microbiology, Institute for Viral Diseases, College of Medicine, Korea University, Seoul, Republic of Korea
Hyeri Seok
Affiliation:
Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, Korea University Ansan Hospital, Ansan, Republic of Korea
Joon-Yong Bae
Affiliation:
Department of Microbiology, Institute for Viral Diseases, College of Medicine, Korea University, Seoul, Republic of Korea
Ji Hoon Jeon
Affiliation:
Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, Korea University Ansan Hospital, Ansan, Republic of Korea
Gee Eun Lee
Affiliation:
Department of Microbiology, Institute for Viral Diseases, College of Medicine, Korea University, Seoul, Republic of Korea
Won Suk Choi
Affiliation:
Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, Korea University Ansan Hospital, Ansan, Republic of Korea
Man-Seong Park
Affiliation:
Department of Microbiology, Institute for Viral Diseases, College of Medicine, Korea University, Seoul, Republic of Korea
Dae Won Park
Affiliation:
Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, Korea University Ansan Hospital, Ansan, Republic of Korea
Corresponding

Abstract

Objective:

To investigate the feasibility of using an ultraviolet light-emitting diode (UV LED) robot for the terminal decontamination of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patient rooms.

Methods:

We assessed the presence of viral RNA in samples from environmental surfaces before and after UV LED irradiation in COVID-19 patient rooms after patient discharge.

Results:

This study analyzed 216 environmental samples from 17 rooms (two from airborne infection isolation rooms [AIIRs] in the intensive care unit [ICU] and 15 from isolation rooms in the community treatment center [CTC]). Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) RNA was detected in 40 (18.5%) of 216 samples after patient discharge: 12 (33.3%) of 36 samples from AIIRs in the ICU, and 28 (15.6%) of 180 samples from isolation rooms in the CTC. In one AIIR, all samples were PCR-negative after UV LED irradiation. In the CTC rooms, 14 (8.6%) of the 163 samples were PCR-positive after UV LED irradiation. However, viable virus was not recovered from the culture of any of the PCR-positive samples.

Conclusions:

Although no viable virus was recovered, SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected on various environmental surfaces. The use of a UV LED disinfection robot was effective in a spacious areas such as an ICU, but its effects varied in small spaces like CTC rooms. This suggests that the UV LED robot may need enough space to disinfect rooms without re-contamination by machine wheels or insufficient disinfection by shadowing.

Type
Original Article
Copyright
© 2021 by The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America. All rights reserved.

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Footnotes

These authors contributed equally to this article as first authors.

*

These authors contributed equally to this article as corresponding authors.

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