With warmer weather quickly approaching, humidity will soon be a weather issue. However, it is an even bigger concern in hospitals, nursing homes, and other healthcare facilities, such as medical or rehabilitation centers. Bacteria and mold pose a number of threats for patients as well as employees in these facilities. And unfortunately, these problems often go unnoticed or untreated.
Mold & Bacteria Growth
Not only is high humidity uncomfortable, but it creates a breeding ground for mold and bacteria. Healthcare facilities have high air quality standards, which requires them to take large amounts of air from outdoors through a ventilation system. Unfortunately, much of this air contains moisture and accounts for about 90% of the humidity in hospitals. That humidity creates an unsafe environment where bacteria can spread and mold can grow. This means that viruses in the hospital could be airborne, or that patients and staff might be breathing in fungi.
While you may believe that simply using a spot cooler will prevent mold growth, it is often not enough to maintain safe humidity levels. Cooler temperatures, like those inside healthcare facilities, can make it difficult to control relative humidity — especially as temperatures outdoors rise. Alone, air conditioning often creates a cool and damp environment where bacteria is likely to be found. This is why dehumidifiers are necessary in this industry.
Especially in nursing homes and hospitals, patients tend to have low immune systems and are more susceptible to infections. Since mold takes only four hours to proliferate, it may not be long until these patients are suffering from:
- Throat irritation
- Respiratory problems
- Memory loss
- Deadly infections
- Pulmonary hemorrhaging
- Bacterial virus
Even employees without compromised immune systems will see symptoms from prolonged mold exposure. Read an earlier blog post to learn more about how mold affects your health.
Rent a Dehumidifier
Renting a dehumidifier is a great way to maintain proper humidity levels on those hot days. Especially in the Spring, temperatures are known to spike at a moment’s notice — creating a high demand for dehumidifiers. However, you probably won’t need them for year-round use, making rental a simpler and more cost efficient option.