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How clean air can help dental practices stay COVID safe


There are many challenges currently facing dental practices. Both in terms of being people’s businesses and livelihoods, and providing patients with the care they need, deserve and expect. Businesses are struggling because they are getting fewer customers through the door. Fewer customers through the door means fewer patients receiving the treatment they need, leading to an inevitable reduction in the dental health of the population as a whole.

So how do you increase patient throughput safely in order to resolve both those issues?

PHE guidelines for dentistry recommend 10 Air Changes per hour (ACH). This means the entire air volume of a room being replaced by clean air 10 times every hour. This is not easy to measure or manage and requires further thought on the part of dental practices trying to implement this directive – where is the “new” air coming from? And where is the old, potentially contaminated air going to as new air floods the room once every 6 minutes?

The guidance states that air cleaning devices are “likely to be effective”, though the problems with both technologies mentioned in that guidance (UV-C and HEPA) are pointed out. HEPA filters will become blocked and lose efficiency over time, while also having a pore size of 0.3µm that potentially allows the 0.12µm SARS-CoV-2 virus to pass through. UV-C lamps can become obscured over time, so the UV emission spectrum can change overtime. Severely compromising its biocidal effects.

However, the addition of recirculating air cleaning devices can enhance the effective air change rate, protecting both patients and staff. Active destruction of any virus that might be in “contaminated” air provides peace of mind when considering where that contaminated air is expelled to.

Given the challenges faced by UV and HEPA based systems, at Howorth we recommend GENANO air purification technology. Since this system has no filters to block and does not rely on UV radiation it delivers incredible efficiency. GENANO systems process the full volume of air in a room multiple times per hour, negatively charging particulates down to nanometre scale. That includes viruses. These now negatively charged particulates can then be easily removed from the air before it is expelled back into the room. No filters to block, no UV lamps to deteriorate over time, just efficient and consistent airborne bioburden reduction.

The technology was deployed against the original SARS outbreak to great success as well as against MERS in the Middle East and SARS-CoV-2 across Asia. In recent independent tests it was shown to remove a SARS-CoV-2 surrogate, killing 99.999% of the virus present. Because it does this via electrostatic filtration there are no physical filters to block or UV lamps to fail. The efficiency of the GENANO technology is consistent and predictable – critical considerations in any healthcare setting.

Howorth Air Tech have been delivering clean air for the protection of our customers for more than 160 years. If you would like more information on the GENANO air purification systems for your dental practice then do not hesitate to contact us:

Or visit our dental website:

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