Frederick County Division of Utilities and Solid Waste Management designed a prototype ultraviolet decontamination unit to help with a potential shortage of N95 masks.
Using the same ultraviolet technology that is used in the County’s water purification and wastewater treament systems, the masks are exposed to shortwave UV-C light for 20 minutes which makes the virus inactive. While Tom Kleinhanzl, President and CEO of Frederick Health explained that Frederick Health Hospital currently has enough supply of masks to protect staff, the “decontamination unit provides another level of reassurance, in the event of an N95 mask shortage.”
From the press release:
“I am so impressed with the innovation and creativity of county employees and their dedication to keeping our community safe,” said County Executive Jan Gardner. “They realized they could help our healthcare workers, first responders and other address the shortage of masks by developing a decontamination unit to allow safe re-use of existing masks. To turn the concept into a reality in such a short time is remarkable. These dedicated employees are making a difference on the front lines of our fight against the coronavirus.”