AtmosAir Presents on Health and Wellness at JLL’s Smart Building Energy Summit

In late April 2017, building owners, energy experts, and technology pioneers came together at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC to address the business and social drivers for more energy efficient buildings.

The 2017 Building Energy Summit provided a valuable forum for AtmosAir President and CEO, Steve Levine, to educate building owners and managers on the different dynamic air purification and health and wellness solutions that are available in the marketplace.

Mr. Levine presented alongside Denise Funkhouser of the GSA and Panagiota Karava, Ph.D from Purdue University on the panel titled ‘Championing Health, Wellness, and Efficiency in the Workplace.’

The session detailed how occupant needs have evolved and which innovative companies are providing multi-purpose technology solutions that create healthier, more efficient, and more productive office spaces.

It also detailed how GSA worked with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the City of New York to develop the Fitwel Certification, in order to promote healthier built environments and encourage building owners, facility managers, and others to incorporate healthful features into the built environment.

The Summit shared successful case studies and provided specific guidelines for benchmarking buildings, monitoring real time air energy usage, analyzing operational data, making efficient upgrades and changes, and integrating the latest technologies to significantly cut energy consumption.

“This is a landmark effort of leaders from the technology, energy, and real estate industries coming together for a common goal,” said Darlene Pope of JLL, a producer of the event. “The Summit brings all the resources attendees need for planning and implementing energy efficient building solutions all under one roof.”

Dr. Dennis P. Deruelle, M.D., F.H.M, Stresses the Importance of AtmosAir in Keeping Hospitals Bacteria Free

When you go to the hospital, whether it’s caring for a loved one or as an actual patient, you inevitably increase your risk of contracting certain infections.  Any type of exposure to harmful bacteria can lead to illnesses as minor as the common cold to as serious as sepsis.

Many hospitals are looking to better the overall patient experience by keeping hospital rooms, ORs and waiting areas as bacteria free as possible.  This starts by cleaning the air in which employees and inhabitants breathe.                

Dr. Dennis Deruelle is a physician and National Medical Director of Acute Services for IPC Healthcare/TeamHealth, one of the largest suppliers of healthcare professional staff and integrated care providers in the country.  Dr. Deruelle helps hospitals and hospital systems across the country improve their quality, safety, and efficiency. He is a national speaker and consultant with expertise in how the Affordable Care Act affects the new value-based world of healthcare.

Dr. Deruelle completed a fellowship in Hospitalist Medicine Leadership at the University of California at San Francisco. Dr. Deruelle was Chief Resident and did his internal medicine training at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill after earning his M.D. from Albany Medical College. He recently published a book, ‘Your Healthcare Playbook: Winning the Game of Modern Medicine.’

We sat down with Dr. Deruelle to discuss more about hospital acquired infections, air filtration, and infections.

  1. How has awareness of hospital infections — and the need for improvement in this area — changed over the past 5 – 10 years?

DD: It’s changed dramatically. I think that there are many reasons, the biggest being that there is just a lot more awareness about this particular issue. It’s an interesting dichotomy: As much as awareness has increased, budgets in this area have decreased. I see so many hospitals dealing with budget reductions that leads to important staff getting cut. So, the awareness has increased, but due to the pressure on hospitals budgets, I see less infectious control staff.

The reason why an increase in overall awareness exists is due mainly to the news headlines that the subject garners, including news on super bugs, super infections and deaths in ICU’s from bugs that we cannot kill with any antibiotic. Ebola also had a little to do with it as a flashpoint in terms of understanding infectious control procedures in hospitals where we saw an obvious breakdown. I think that the pressure from the federal government and the Affordable Care Act, along with pay-for-performance has heightened the awareness from hospitals.

Finally, the staggering number of deaths that occur in hospitals every year plays a huge role in raised awareness. There have been many studies that have pointed this out, from the first one, To Err is Human in 1999, to a recent study that said deaths in hospitals from medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the U.S.

Buried in those numbers are the amount of people that die in hospitals from infections they’ve gotten in hospitals, which is about 100,000 per year. These numbers are leaking out on a macro level, which leads to reporting in the newspapers that an emergency room or operating room has been shut down due to MRSA. The combination of all of these factors has really raised awareness.

  1. How big a role does air quality play in improving the patient experience, reducing infections and ultimately lessening readmissions?

DD: The patient experience is huge nowadays. Patient-centric care is the future of healthcare. Through the Affordable Care Act, the federal government placed hospitals in a position of losing money or winning money based on performance against other hospitals… or themselves. Readmissions is one performance area that’s reviewed. Another is hospital-acquired conditions, and the third is patient experience using the HCAHPS survey. The HCAHPS includes a question about the cleanliness of the hospital, and I do think air quality can play into that component. If you’re in the top 25 percent of the country in the spreading of infections, then you’re losing 1 percent of Medicare, and next year C.diff and MRSA are going to be added to those infections that are dinging hospitals. This is certainly one area where having organisms in the air is playing directly into an area that’s important to hospitals and patients.

Readmissions now come with a 3 percent Medicare penalty on certain diagnoses: Acute myocardial infarction, pneumonia, congestive heart failure, hips and knee joints (infections/complications) and COPD. So it’s not that we have specific readmission penalties for infections, but some patients that go in and have those diagnoses will leave the hospital and get readmitted with an infection gotten when they were in the hospital.

Hospital stay length is also affected by patients that have existing respiratory diseases, and are affected by particulate matter in the air, dust or mold.

For all of these reasons, air quality (the odor, particulate matter, bacteria or viruses that are floating in the air) can have a huge impact on patients and hospitals.

  1. What role can AtmosAir play in dealing with these important issues?

DD: AtmosAir can certainly improve the patient experience, and if [patients] knew that the air they were breathing was being filtered, ionized and deodorized, it would be information they’d certainly enjoy being made aware of. Having the sensation that the air is cleaner, and that it’s being cleaned by AtmosAir, would be a very good thing for a hospital. It’s been shown in the lab that AtmosAir’s technology kills certain viruses and bacteria, and because of that, it’s believed that it will reduce bacteria on surfaces and in the air. If that takes place, I believe that it will provide a decrease in overall infections. It’s also true that certain patients with respiratory disorders will do better in rooms that use AtmosAir products.

  1. What kind of advantages can hospitals/medical centers take advantage of by promoting the use of clean-air systems in their institutions?

DD: The overarching point is that these products are energy efficient, so it’s important to anyone interested in having a green building. Secondly, indoor air quality is important for the people who work long hours in these buildings. You don’t want to have any version of a sick building. We want to make sure that the ventilation is good and efficient. Just having AtmosAir alone — forgetting the healthcare aspect of it being in the building — should be seen as a positive.

In general, when discussing patient health, reducing the chance of getting an infection — and 100,000 people die from these infections annually — or of patients having a prolonged hospital stay, or of them getting an infection in a joint that might need to be replaced —which is a major operation — would be positive results of using AtmosAir. These are just a few reasons why it would bode well for a hospital to let people know that they’re using these modalities to help reduce infections. You’re not going to get infections down to zero without using many, many modalities, and I think that’s where AtmosAir fits in. They attack the problem from a unique spot [airborne and surface organisms], which is a different angle than the hospital staff attacks from.

  1. What has been the primary cause of infections like MRSA and Staph becoming so rampant?

DD: When people come in the hospital, we don’t have as many people checking them to see if they have some of these infections. We’re not screening as well and not picking up infections soon enough. Because of those things, they’re having a bigger impact on the actual hospitals. That’s where I think the budget decreases are really hurting us. In terms of the numbers of infections, what happens inside the hospitals doesn’t affect what happens outside of the hospitals. Most of the infections with MRSA occur outside the hospitals within the community, and that’s a byproduct of the organism. We have a lot more of it. It’s resistant to the penicillins, which is why it’s called MRSA [Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aurea]. The more you have of it, the more it’s going to spread. I also think the inappropriate overuse of antibiotics is creating organisms that are resistant, and that is driving more cases.

Green Lights: AtmosAir featured in the New York Post

The hot topic on every developers mind as of late, was confirmed by AtmosAir’s feature in the New York Post on April 25th, 2017.  Editor, Lois Weiss noted, ‘Many municipalities now require energy audits and yearly benchmarking of energy use,’ making sustainability a major priority in the eyes of institutional investors.’

Numerous New York City properties are also prioritizing Indoor Air Quality as a major focus for their inhabitants.  Tower 45’s (120 W. 45th St) $20 million makeover includes an AtmosAir system in their sustainability program.  President and CEO, Steve Levine, explains how AtmosAir has helped to eradicate bacteria, virus, and germs by using bi polar ionization systems.

To read the full article in The New York Post click – HERE.

 

AtmosAir Awarded Research Grant in Singapore

AtmosAir, along with our technology partner in Singapore, Techbridge Ventures, was recently awarded a research grant of up to 500,000 SGD ($360,000 USD) from Jurong Town Corporation (JTC).

AtmosAir was one of 10 recipients from among a pool of over 150 applications. This project, as well as test bedding projects will be carried out over the next 2 years.

Singapore’s geography means that buildings cool and dehumidify air intensively 12 months a year.  Moreover, Singapore, while generally having relatively good air quality, is occasionally shrouded in dense haze from regional agricultural burning.

Jurong Town Corporation is a Singaporean state owned real estate company under the Ministry of Trade and Industry headquartered in Jurong, Singapore. Established in 1968, the company was set up by the Government of Singapore as the country’s principal developer and manager of industrial estates and their related facilities.  As of 2016, the company managed 43 estates that cover 17,500 acres of land area.

NYU School of Medicine Professor Philip Tierno Jr., ‘Dr. Germ,’ Completes Paper on AtmosAir Technology

 

Dr. Philip M. Tierno Jr., Professor of Microbiology & Pathology at New York University and NYU Langone Medical Center reviewed published research and testing on AtmosAir purification technology and concluded in his recent paper:

“There is only one technology that satisfies all of the tenants for providing clean indoor air quality for an entire building, which uses low energy, is effective against bacteria, viruses, and mold fungi (whether in air or on surfaces), neutralizes particulates, breaks down VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds), eliminates unpleasant odors, eliminates static electricity, and produces no chemical or harmful by-products (including NO ozone production) and this is accomplished by the production of positive and negative ions (bipolar ionization). That system is AtmosAir Bipolar Ionization.”

Read the full paper – HERE

About the author

Dr. Tierno is Professor of Microbiology and Pathology at NYU School of Medicine and NYU Langone Medical Center. He also serves on the Global Hygiene Council. Dr. Tierno is the author of the book, The Secret Life of Germs, and has authored or co-authored several other publications. Dr. Tierno has served on the New York City Mayor’s Task Force on Bio Terrorism.

AtmosAir President and CEO, Steve Levine, featured on Cheddar

This past April 4th, 2017, President and CEO of AtmosAir, Steve Levine, appeared on Cheddar’s closing bell show to report on the air quality at the NY Stock Exchange.  After explaining AtmosAir’s newest application, AtmosAware, he broke down the properties of the air that workers were currently breathing utilizing the AtmosAware app and monitoring system.

AtmosAware monitors concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2), particle levels (PM2.5), and Total Volatile Organic Compounds (TVOC), while measuring temperature, humidity, illumination and noise level.  With AtmosAware™, you can finally see real time and historical parameters for your indoor environmental air quality, analyze data rapidly with online results processing and review current measurements and environmental quantities via a real time data display dashboard, network configuration, device management and helpful tips.

Cheddar was the ideal showcase for AtmosAir as the live and on demand video network focuses on covering the most innovative products, technologies, and services transforming our lives.  The network covers this news through the lens of the companies and executives driving these changes. Cheddar broadcasts live daily from Post 10 on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, NASDAQ Marketsite, and the Flatiron Building.

To view Steve’s Cheddar segment in its entirety:

https://cheddar.vhx.tv/videos/cheddar-closing-bell-s8-e040417-e-full-mezz-hd-en-us

Allergy Season Is Here! 5 Ways to Improve Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our lead indoor environmentalist and VP of Operations, Tony Abate, looks at five ways to help us improve the quality of air we’re breathing at home.

Seasonal allergy symptoms are commonly experienced part of the year, usually during spring, summer or fall when certain trees or grasses pollinate. This depends on the kind of trees or types of grass. For instance, some trees such as oak, elm, and maple pollinate in the spring, while grasses such as bermuda, timothy and orchard pollinate in the summer.

Published research tells us that Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) is directly linked to health and wellness. In order to live long lives, we need to do all in our power to make sure our environments are clean and healthy.

I’ve laid out 5 easy steps to make sure our home’s air is healthy and fresh.

  1. Keep your floors fresh

Vacuum frequently with a machine with a HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filter. These vacuums are more efficient at absorbing and trapping small particles, and can remove contaminants and other allergens that a regular vacuum would recirculate into the air. Change the filter often, and don’t forget to vacuum the stuffed furniture (get under those couch and stuffed cushions).

All should know that ten harmful chemicals are found in 90 percent of the dust samples across numerous studies, including a known cancer-causing agent called TDCIPP, a flame retardant frequently found in furniture, baby products and other household items.

Dust is also made up of ultra-fine particulate matter. If not removed from the home, ultra-fine ‘PM’ makes its way into the air and even into our lungs and blood stream.

We suggest vacuuming two or more times each week.

  1. Introduce plants that improve IAQ

During the late 1980’s, NASA began studying houseplants as a means of providing purer and cleaner air for space stations. What they learned is that there are many different houseplants that can help to purify the air.

Many people have Aloe Vera in their homes because of its healing ability. The gel inside the leaves is excellent for helping to heal burns and cuts. Aloe Vera, however, is also a great plant to improve your indoor air quality. It is easy to grow (and hard to kill for those of you who do not possess a green thumb) and it helps to keep your home free from benzene which is commonly found in paint and certain chemical cleaners.

The Peace Lily is a beautiful plant and one that can improve your indoor air quality by as much as 60 percent. It helps to reduce the levels of mold spores that grow in the home by absorbing those spores through its leaves and then circulating them to the plant’s roots where they are used as food.

Plants bring about more peace and wellness so don’t hesitate to add a few to your bedroom, a critical area where we spend nearly 33% of our lives.

  1. Eliminate the harmful cleaners and fragrances

Cleaning supplies and air fresheners are packed with dozens of chemicals. Stay away!!

Be conscious of laundry detergents, fabric softeners, dryer sheets, air fresheners in all forms. All of these could be emitting harmful, potentially cancer causing gases.

In one study, a plug-in air freshener was found to emit 20 different volatile organic compounds (VOCs), including seven regulated as toxic or hazardous under U.S. federal laws. But these chemicals were not included on the label — only the word “fragrance” is required to be listed. The actual composition of the fragrance is considered a “trade secret.” (Web MD).

  1. Never smoke inside

Smoke is made of complex gases and particles that are really hard to break down as they linger.

“Probably the single most important aspect of indoor air pollution is secondhand cigarette smoke,” says Philip Landrigan, MD, a pediatrician and director of the Children’s Environmental Health Center at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City.

Cigarette smoke contains thousands of chemicals and research has proven that it can increase respiratory infections, asthma, cancer, breathing problems, heart attacks, and stroke.

  1. Run your AtmosAir system

As Dr. Phil Tierno stated in his recent paper on AtmosAir active purification systems,

“There is only one technology that satisfies all of the tenants for providing clean indoor air quality for an entire building, which uses low energy, is effective against bacteria, viruses, and mold fungi (whether in air or on surfaces), neutralizes particulates, breaks down VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) eliminates unpleasant odors, eliminates static electricity, and produces no chemical or harmful by-products (including NO ozone production) and this is accomplished by the production of positive and negative ions (bipolar ionization). That system is AtmosAir Bipolar Ionization.”

AtmosAir is great at complementing your HVAC system to reduce various contaminants that make their way into the house. We suggest running the fan 24/7 with your AtmosAir system for the best results.

HBR Research: Stale Office Air Is Making You Less Productive

 

Harvard’s director of the Healthy Buildings program at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Joseph G. Allen, has been bringing light to an issue we’ve been discussing for years:  IAQ is directly correlated to our health and wellness.

Spending time in fresh air, surrounded by nature, has been said to increase one’s energy by 90% – why not offer the same effect for your employees in the office environment?!  AtmosAir’s indoor air purification system makes it possible for office employees to refresh their lungs while working with the same clean, pure air found only at the highest mountain elevations!

Allen notes, “How often do you consider the air quality in your office and how it affects employees and their productivity? Chances are it’s not often.  There is a tendency to assume that, if commonly used standards for air quality are met, it won’t be an issue. But these standards aren’t very high.”

Dating back to the 1970’s, ‘efforts to conserve energy in the U.S. included tightening up buildings and reducing ventilation rates so buildings didn’t have to bring as much fresh air inside.  This inadvertently led to a buildup of indoor pollutants and the birth of a phenomenon known as “sick building syndrome,” a set of symptoms such as eye irritation, headaches, coughing, and chest tightness that is still an issue today.’

The need to ensure and enhance employee productivity is a reality no business can ignore, and companies are understanding the value of keeping their workforce healthy and more productive.  Gensler and JLL state that it’s worth over $1,500 – $2,000 per employee in less absenteeism with cleaner air.

Harvard Business Review article in its entirety here: https://hbr.org/2017/03/research-stale-office-air-is-making-you-less-productive

Healthier Facilities: AtmosAir to Monitor Air Quality in all NFL Training Centers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In February of 2017, AtmosAir joined the NFL Professional Football Athletic Trainers Society at the NFL combine in Indianapolis to present for the 10th straight year.

Before the conference President and CEO of AtmosAir Solutions, Steve Levine, thanked the PFATs team for all they have done to increase awareness around improving the quality of indoor air and air sanitation.

In addition each team was presented with an AtmosAware air quality monitor for their training rooms. AtmosAir will monitor ultrafine particulate levels, gaseous contaminant levels, temperature, carbon dioxide, relative humidity and carbon monoxide to better understand the indoor environmental quality in these facilities.

Levine notes, “As part of our ten-year anniversary, we’re looking forward to monitoring air quality in all respective NFL training rooms.  We’re excited to establish baselines on arguably the most important health aspect in our lives – the air we breathe. We know our work with various NFL teams has given us a platform to increase our message.  I believe we will use these analytics to compare different facilities and ultimately improve many more facilities not just in professional sports.  The power of comparison is great because we’re all trying to better ourselves.  If this urges each organization to validate their current facility, it can go a long way in the methodology to not only understand where we are today, but also enhance and make our facilities healthier.”

The Professional Football Athletic Trainers Society (PFATS) is a Professional Association representing the athletic trainers of the National Football League.  They aim to serve the players of the NFL, the member Clubs, and other members of the community.  Their overall purpose is to insure the highest quality of health care is provided to the National Football League.

AtmosAir purification and AtmosAware Indoor Air Quality monitoring is installed in various professional, collegiate, and everyday sports training environments.

AtmosAir Project Profile: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AtmosAir is proud to announce that Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) has installed it’s indoor air purification technology in Terminal 3, Terminal 4, Terminal 5, Terminal 7, and the Tom Bradley International Terminal.  The AtmosAir system provides LAX’s 70+ million annual passengers noticeably healthier indoor air quality by breaking down jet fuel and odors into simple harmless elements.

Airports typically see an increased contaminant load due to their locations and constant flow of human traffic, thus having cleaner, healthier air quality is a must.

“AtmosAir’s active ionization technology, from what we have found, works well to combat jet fume odors to improve air quality here at LAX,” said Richard Yakel of LAWA Facilities and Technical Services. “We have terminals with AtmosAir systems in place and they require very little maintenance and have worked for us as intended – to purify the air and also clean and purify the HVAC system.  We have been very satisfied with this technology.”

Los Angeles International Airport is the largest and busiest airport in the Greater Los Angeles Area and the state of California, as well as one of the largest international airports in the United States.  As the largest international airport on the U.S. West Coast, LAX is a major gateway to and from Europe, Latin America, Asia and Oceania.

Learn how AtmosAir can keep your operations in top form at atmosair.com.