Imaging Equipment Playing Key Role In Battling Covid-19

It seems the Coronavirus continues to spread across the world, impacting everything from daily life to the global economy. In these challenging times, the healthcare sector plays a particularly important role. In addition to protective clothing, respiratory masks and respirators, the ability to test rapidly and accurately is vital. However, rapid testing demands the availability of various laboratory analysers. Meeting the demand for analytical instruments requires that manufacturers continue production, to ensure the continuous supply of critical components across the world.

How to fight the virus?
Researchers around the globe are striving to develop an effective vaccine against the Coronavirus, but this still requires time. To combat the further spread of the coronavirus efficiently, immediate detection of the virus is of crucial importance. The aim is to reduce the chain of infection and thus the infection rate. But to identify who is and who is not infected requires that as many tests as possible are performed. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, head of the World Health Organisation (WHO), famously said during a press conference in March: ‘Test, test, test’.

Rapid tests and test analyzers
To test thousands of people, thousands of rapid tests are required, which in turn calls for great numbers of analytical devices for their evaluation. One common analysis method of these devices is the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). This method is widely used in molecular biology to multiply the patient’s DNA.

How does the PCR test work?
First, a smear is taken from the patient’s mouth, nose or throat. This sample is then sent to a laboratory. Each virus can be identified by a specific characteristic section of its genetic material. However, the quantity of the genetic material from the smear must be multiplied in order for there to be sufficient material to determine whether the pathogen is present or not. For this purpose, so-called thermocyclers are used, which initiate the polymerase chain reaction. In 30 to 50 cycles, the DNA is amplified exponentially.

If the pathogen is present in the sample, its genetic material will multiply and will be detected. If there is no genome of the pathogen, it will not go through the multiplication process and therefore not be detected. Using a fluorescence dye, the amplification of the pathogen genome can be monitored in real time. This is called real-time PCR.

It usually takes several days before the patient receives the test result. To send the sample to the laboratory takes the longest time, the test itself takes up to five hours.

Medical imaging as a further diagnostic tool
Severe cases of Covid-19 are associated with pneumonia, which can lead to changes in lung tissue. As a further diagnostic tool of coronavirus, medical imaging techniques such as computed tomography (CT) and conventional radiography of the thorax are used. Changes of lung tissue are visible in the images obtained through these methods. In some cases, the pneumonia associated changes of lung tissue are already visible despite the test results of PCR being negative. With computed tomography or thorax x-rays, the severity of the disease can be assessed and the clinical indication in severe cases monitored.

Compared to PCR, an advantage of medical imaging is that the results are available immediately. On the other hand, ionising radiation is used in CT and X-Ray, so the health benefit for the patient must outweigh the radiation risk.

How UV Light Can Help Sanitize Your Restaurant During This Pandemic

It can be incredibly difficult to ensure all surfaces have been cleaned properly or there are certain areas that might not be regularly sanitized. Depending on what you are trying to clean, different types of sanitizers or disinfectants are recommended. It is hard to know the right cleaner for each type of situation and to follow all of the guidelines (which are sometimes up to 10 minutes of a surface remaining visible wet with certain chemical disinfectants).

UV light offers an additional layer of protection to ensure germs are killed anywhere the light touches. This is not only insurance against areas that may have been missed during standard cleaning, but also for areas that may not be conducive to being easily disinfected with chemicals.

#1: UV LIGHT CAN TACKLE MOLD & MILDEW
A common battle that many restaurants face is the struggle to combat mold and mildew in walk-in freezers. While moisture is mold’s friend, depending on what you store in your walk-in freezer, it might not be possible to keep mold and mildew at bay simply by controlling the humidity level. The walk-in freezer is also a place that may be hard to disinfect regularly from both a time perspective and keeping your food safe from harmful chemicals.

That’s where an installed solution that deploys UV light to disinfect your walk-in refrigerator or freezer comes in. UV germ-killing light installed in your walk-in freezer can safely kill mold and mildew, but it’s also safe for use around food. For over half a century, using UV light in food processing plants has been used to safely and effectively combat foodborne pathogens.

#2: UV LIGHT CAN DISINFECT YOUR ORDERING AND POS DEVICES
Non-food contact equipment are another common violation category. There were over so many violations in Florida food service establishments in 2016-2017. Therefore, it’s critical to have strategies in place to sanitize all types of surfaces and equipment.

With changing consumer trends, more and more restaurants have started incorporating technology for placing orders or kiosks for patrons to play games or pay their bill. How are these items being cleaned?

UV Light used in the portable germ-killing units from Violet Defense could be positioned each night to help disinfect these types of items without having to worry about harming electronics with chemicals. However, the benefits could go further if you could then incorporate a digital display into those kiosks. Cleanliness and ambiance matter to your customers, so let your patrons know how you are taking cleanliness of everything from kiosk to kitchen seriously.

#3: UV LIGHT CAN AUTOMATICALLY DISINFECT YOUR BATHROOMS
Many customers will make assumptions about the cleanliness of your kitchen based on the cleanliness of your bathrooms, so this is a great opportunity to leave a positive impression in their mind. Using UV germ-killing light to disinfect bathrooms not only helps better protect staff and customers from potentially harmful germs, you are helping to create a better experience, which is important for customer satisfaction and brand loyalty.

One of the challenges that is posed with keeping places like restrooms clean is that bacteria quickly repopulates. A recent study of germs in public restrooms, found that “within one hour of sterilization, the bathrooms were completely recolonized with microbes.” Once installed, the germ-killing lights from Violet Defense can automatically disinfect a bathroom anytime it’s unoccupied. This technology is already in use in various public settings, including hotel and school bathrooms.

#4: UV LIGHT CAN REDUCE YOUR DEPENDENCE ON CHEMICALS
A great benefit of UV light for disinfection is that it is chemical-free, helping protect your staff, customers, and equipment from the potentially harmful effects of certain chemicals. Use soap and water to clean off dirt and grime from any surfaces, then the UV light can disinfect spaces throughout your restaurant – anywhere the light touches. It has been proven effective at killing up to 99.9% of many of the most harmful foodborne pathogens, including E. Coli, Salmonella, and Norovirus.

It only takes one outbreak to ruin the reputation of a restaurant or force a shutdown costing thousands of dollars (if not more). Disinfecting with UV light can add a layer of protection for you, your staff, and your customers against foodborne illnesses.

Contact Parker Lighting to learn more about how UV light can help with your business safety goals.

Lighting Companies Including GE Current and LEDVANCE Sponsor Free LED Lights for Coronavirus Remote Site Testing

The National Lighting Bureau (NLB), through its members, is offering free LED lights for the remote sites being set up across the U.S. to test for the coronavirus.

The Bureau provides its services to the public free of charge with the funding of the organization’s sponsors, which include individuals, professional societies, trade associations, labor unions, manufacturers, and agencies of the U.S. government. The participated associates include:

  • BIOS Lighting
  • Finelite
  • GE Current, a Daintree Company
  • Healthe by Lighting Science
  • Illuminating Engineering Society (IES)
  • Imperial Lighting Maintenance Company
  • Inspired LED
  • International Association of Lighting Management Companies (NALMCO)
  • International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW)
  • Kurtzon Lighting
  • LEDVANCE
  • Lighting Controls Association (LCA)
  • Lutron Electronics Company, Inc.
  • National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA)
  • National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA)
  • New Star Lighting
  • Pompeo Group
  • QSSI
  • Truly Green Solutions
  • Universal Lighting Technologies
  • U.S. General Services Administration
  • ZLED Lighting

Ray Kasmark, NLB Chairman, said, “We believe that quality lighting inside of the tents will increase throughput while improving the safety and comfort during the testing process.”

Americans Rehanging Christmas Lights To Light Darkness of Coronavirus

Across the country, Americans are literally shining a light amid the darkness of the coronavirus pandemic.

Nearly three months after Christmas, people practicing social distancing at home are putting their lights back up to help lift everyone’s spirits as the country fights through the crisis.

“What if we all put our Christmas lights back up?” Lane Grindle, a play-by-play broadcaster for the Milwaukee Brewers, tweeted Sunday. “Then we could get in the car and drive around and look at them. That seems like a fair social distancing activity.”

 

Since then many have rehung their lights and shared their handiwork on social media.

 

 

Lighting Companies in the US Expect Delayed Product Supply due to Coronavirus Epidemic

The outbreak of novel coronavirus continues to escalate and the production in China is postponing due to the epidemic, leading to expected production and supply chain delay. US-based lighting companies, Cooper Lighting Solutions and Satco, posted a notice respectively to inform their customers of the possible interruption of product supply.

Cooper Lighting Solution noted in its “Coronavirus Update” that due to travel and logistics suspensions enacted by Chinese authorities, its suppliers have not resume production yet. This delay in operations capabilities will drive an interruption in the supply chain for some products in the coming weeks.

The company said that it will try to minimize the delays and is working on prioritizing the production schedule to support its customers as best as it can. Meanwhile, Cooper Lighting also indicated that it will increase capabilities of its manufacturing facilities in North America with local components and materials.

Satco also sent a letter to its customers elaborating the on-going situation in China due to the coronavirus outbreak. Since employees traveling back to work from other area will remain in quarantine for 14 days under the government’s supervision even when factories resume production, lack of work force is foreseen.

Satco indicated that it has significant stock levels in its domestic warehouses and is working with its supplier to ship high priority items first. However, the company still anticipated impacts on the supply chain and will take measure to ensure return to normal inventory levels.

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