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11 December 2008

Open windows beat germs

Opening windows may offer a simple way to prevent the spread of tuberculosis and other airborne infections, suggests a new study.

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Opening windows may offer a simple way to prevent the spread of tuberculosis and other airborne infections, suggests a study by researchers at Imperial College London in the UK.

The researchers compared 70 rooms with natural ventilation and 12 rooms with mechanical ventilation at a hospital in Lima, Peru. Even when wind speeds were at their lowest, natural ventilation was more effective than mechanical ventilation at dispersing airborne germs, CBC News reported.

"Opening windows and doors maximises natural ventilation so that the risk of airborne contagion is much lower than with costly, maintenance-requiring mechanical ventilation systems," the study authors wrote.

"Old-fashioned clinical areas with high ceilings and large windows provide greatest protection. Natural ventilation costs little and is maintenance free," the researchers noted.

The study was published in the online issue of the Public Library of Science journal PLoS Medicine. – (HealthDayNews)

Read more:
Germs keep us healthy
Beat those germs this winter

For more information on care and support of tuberculosis visit South African National TB Association (SANTA) or phone them on 011 454 0260.

February 2007

 
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