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Developing resilient healthcare facilities for better infection control


Civil Engineering

About the Project

The design of a healthcare facility shall respond in a way to offer substantial protection to the healthcare workings, patients and visitors. Unfortunately, the present hospital design philosophy, which is based on an evidence-based design approach, cannot sufficiently consider the transmission characteristics of the new severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) which has led to serious hospital-acquired infection of the disease (i.e. COVID-19) around the world.

This project aims to look into the key factors governing healthcare-associated infections (or nosocomial infections) due to contaminated built environments, with emphasis on respiratory illnesses. Human factors such as crowd flow patterns on the epidemic dynamics will be considered through computer simulations. This will help to assess the efficiency of present infection control approaches adopted by the hospitals, allowing for the development of more resilient healthcare facilities in a bid to better infection control and prevention.

Funding Notes

Brunel offers a number of funding options to research students that help cover the cost of their tuition fees, contribute to living expenses or both. See more information here: View Website. Recently the UK Government made available the Doctoral Student Loans of up to £25,000 for UK and EU students and there is some funding available through the Research Councils. Many of our international students benefit from funding provided by their governments or employers. Brunel alumni enjoy tuition fee discounts of 15%.)

References

S. Evans, E. Agnew, E. Vynnycky, J.V. Robotham, The impact of testing and infection prevention and control strategies on within-hospital transmission dynamics of COVID-19 in English hospitals, medRxiv, (2020) 2020.2005.2012.20095562.
ECDC, Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic: increased transmission in the EU/EEA and the UK - seventh update, European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, Stockholm, 2020.
Department of Health, Health Building Note 00-01: General design guidance for healthcare buildings, London, 2014.
Department of Health, Health Building Note 00-09: Infection control in the built environment, London, 2014.
N. van Doremalen, T. Bushmaker, D.H. Morris, M.G. Holbrook, A. Gamble, B.N. Williamson, A. Tamin, J.L. Harcourt, N.J. Thornburg, S.I. Gerber, J.O. Lloyd-Smith, E. de Wit, V.J. Munster, Aerosol and Surface Stability of SARS-CoV-2 as Compared with SARS-CoV-1, New England Journal of Medicine, 382 (2020) 1564-1567.

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