LUBBOCK, Texas — As COVID-19 cases continue to surge in Lubbock, some hospitals are turning to new methods to help fight the virus by enlisting the help of an air filtering machine that can kill COVID-19.
“It reduces the risk for COVID,” said Aerobiotix area Sales Manager Scott Fortado.
According to the National Institute of Health, the coronavirus can survive for three hours as an airborne aerosol, meaning clean air, especially in hospitals, is now more important than ever.
“This technology is extraordinary, and it’s the only FDA-approved machine that is proven to actually kill COVID in the air,” said Owner of Matador Medical Paul Fioroni.
The Illuvia machine, originally designed to filter out contaminants in sterile environments is now being used in hospitals as a way to remove airborne COVID-19 particles after studies proved it could eliminate COVID-19 from the air.
“This was a product that was ahead of its time, I think. We saw it used in a lot of tuberculosis applications, but now with COVID, it’s just another piece of equipment to help everyone feel that much safer,” said Fortado.
Three filters work together to clean the air and kill bacteria. One prevents germs from going in from coming back out, another prevents the contamination from building up, and the third, a UV light actually kills any viruses or bacteria in the air.
“Ultraviolet light is proven to kill any type of viral material. This is the only unit that has been tested with live COVID, so we put 15 million cells through here with 100 percent elimination in a single pass,” said Fortado.
It’s been mostly used in operating rooms to prevent infection, but now Fioroni is hoping it can do more.
“Really what we are trying to do is make this community safe, and this technology specifically will do that,” said Fioroni. “There is no reason that these couldn’t be used in restaurants in banks lobbies specific industrial buildings and so forth.”
Fioroni hopes this can help Lubbock get one step closer to beating COVID-19.
“It’s all about getting everybody safe. Giving everybody the utmost fighting chance to make sure No. 1 they do not contract COVID and they don’t pass it along and two we stop these spikes from happening in West Texas,” said Fioroni.
Several hospitals in the area are finalizing contracts to take these machines onboard, and they are expected to be added in the next few weeks.