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Your guide to Room Pressure and Ventilation Studies
Specialized spaces must be maintained at a positive or negative pressure to ensure safety and compliance to standards. Ventilation systems that maintain and control room pressurization within hospital isolation rooms are typically classified as either Airborne Infection Isolation – AII Rooms (Negative to hallway) or Protective Environment – PE room (Positive to hallway). These rooms are designed to comply with various standards such as ASHRAE 170-2008, FGI/AIA 2010, and CDC. To comply with the standards, these rooms typically are set up to maintain a small pressure differential relative to a hallway or anteroom. This pressure is stipulated in the standards as a minimum of 0.01 in. H2O (2.5 Pa).
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This assessment is conducted to determine proper ventilation in accordance with applicable standards. The study includes an evaluation of the ventilation system to determine correct pressure relationships to adjacent areas and proper air changes per hour in the employee workplace. All ventilation studies are performed on equipment that is calibrated using the standards of accuracy from National Institute of Standards and Technology. All tests meet ASHRAE, NIOSH, OSHA and other applicable Standards.
Airborne Infection Isolation Room: A room designed for persons having or suspected of having an infection that is spread through coughing or other ways of suspending droplets of pathogens into the air (e.g. tuberculosis, small pox).
Protective Environment Room: A patient room that is intended to protect a high risk immunocompromised patient from human and environmental airborne pathogens.
Air Changes Per Hour: Measure of the air volume added to or removed from a space (normally a room or house) divided by the volume of the space.
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