In today’s climate and this century’s most widespread global pandemic, the need for ground-breaking sanitation solutions has never been more critical.
By Conrad Kullmann, MD of FAR UVC Africa
At the forefront of modern-day hygiene and sanitation is human safe far-UVC technology. While much of the world’s focus has turned towards the introduction and distribution of vaccines, and rightly so, there is merit yet in businesses and even industries considering far-UVC sanitation methods for the health and wellbeing of their staff and their customers.
Far-UVC differs significantly to standard UVC technology, in that it is safe for humans and animals and achieves this by emitting a lower wavelength of 222 nanometres.
Much talk of COVID-19 defences in 2021 has been of the formulation and distribution of vaccines, the first of which was given at the start of December in 2020 in the United Kingdom. Preventative vaccinations are undoubtably a primary defence against the Coronavirus and their necessity couldn’t prove more vital.
However, if we are to consider a farther-reaching form of defence or, rather more extensive preventative measure, we needn’t look further than far-UVC sanitation light technology. While, as mentioned, the use of vaccines is able to protect individuals from exposure to the virus, what measures can be taken to combat infection on a larger scale?
If we take into consideration that the virus is airborne, our focus might shift towards the disinfection of the air around us. Various studies on the disinfection benefits of UVC technology have been conducted since the outbreak of COVID-19 and the method appears to be both successful and favourable. Despite taking off elsewhere in the world, awareness and implementation in South Africa is still in the early stages.
Globally, far-UVC has proven itself invaluable, with many companies and industries opting for the ultraviolet light as a means to disinfect and purify the air within the premises of business. Notably, American fast food corporation, Yum! Brands. At the very start of 2021, Yum! Brands and Columbia University embarked on a study with the aim of championing far-UVC technology as a modern-day pioneer in the fight against COVID-19.
We are seeing more and more business cases for the implentation of far-UVC sanitising light technology being brought “to light”. These include leading airplane manufacturer, Boeing**, who has helped design and develop a wand that uses the far-UVC 222nm light technology to enhance the safety of their passengers and crew during the COVID-19 pandemic. Other such business sectors starting to follow suit include senior care facilities, medical facilities, commercial offices, hairdressers and bakeries, just to name a few.
With the market for far-UVC technology still in its infancy in South Africa, it has become ever more important to drive home its versatility in this market. Disinfection and sanitisation using far-UVC has the potential to be implemented in any and all public spaces, whether it be in large-scale institutions, such as schools, universities, hospitals and retail spaces, or even public transport.
We believe it is critical to be proactive, and realise that this pandemic is a wakeup call. A proactive approach must be implemented to mitigate not only the risk of future pandemics, but the general health and wellbeing of a nation. As populations grow so do viruses. Vaccines only offer a reprieve until the next mutation or strand. The sooner leaders and authorities realise this and change their strategy from being reactive to proactive the better, and better prepared we will all be.
In conclusion, the use of far-UVC technology in South Africa, although burgeoning, has the potential to bring about some element of normality within public spaces. It has obvious health benefits for the population on the whole but also allows for businesses to operate more regularly and the knock-on effects would be substantial. In summary, there is massive potential in our market in almost all industries.