As UCSF laboratory and clinical research are gradually returning to Campus, many of you may ask, is my building/ laboratory/ office ventilation system safe to perform my day-to-day activity?
UCSF labs have ventilation systems that utilize 100% outside air (OSA) and high filtration. Introducing fresh outside air minimizes the risk of infection from the air distribution system. These systems have filtration components exceeding industry standards for indoor air quality.
According to the ASHRAE (American Society of Heating and Refrigeration Engineers), “Transmission of COVID19 through the air is sufficiently likely that airborne exposure to the virus should be controlled. Changes to building operations, including the operation of heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning systems, can reduce airborne exposures.”
UCSF Facilities’ is taking precautions to minimize the risk of spreading the virus via the building ventilation. Offices and support spaces that normally use partially recirculated air are being temporarily adjusted to maximize outside air levels and reduce recirculation. Please note that these measures are to prevent the spread of COVID-19 via the ventilation. Ventilation adjustments will not replace the use of the correct PPE, social distancing, increased cleaning, and disinfecting surfaces.
As our UCSF community gradually transitions back to on-site work, Facilities along with Environmental Health and Safety will continue preparations to meet a phased return to work approach. This includes building by building assessments of the ventilation systems and closely monitoring CDC and ASHRAE recommendations. This team will provide specific recommendations before occupants return to their labs and offices.
For further information or questions about your building’s ventilation, please contact the Facilities Customer Service Center at 415-476-2021.