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Seunghon Ham 1 Article
Prevention of exposure to and spread of COVID-19 using air purifiers: challenges and concerns
Seunghon Ham
Epidemiol Health. 2020;42:e2020027.   Published online April 17, 2020
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  • 21 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDF
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is now a pandemic. The Korean government has declared a red alert, which is the highest level of the national infectious disease alert system, and the World Health Organization has similarly declared its highest-level pandemic alert (phase 6). The spread of COVID-19 is an unprecedented worldwide public health problem that governments and individuals must work to overcome. Recently, an infection cluster arose in a call center in Seoul. To support call center companies, the Korean Ministry of Employment and Labor has proposed covering the costs of installing partitions and air purifiers, providing hand sanitizers, and supplying masks to prevent droplet and aerosol infections. Air purifiers are expected to be installed on the floor with the exhaust outlets at a higher level, such as the level of the desks or breathing zones of workers. When a worker coughs or releases droplets near a colleague’s respiratory system, the droplets may spread throughout the call center via air flow from air purifier. In this fashion, a single infected person can give rise to an infection cluster. Attempts to prevent infection must not lead to new infections, and the installation of air purifiers may cause new problems. Therefore, using air purifiers to control the spread of COVID-19 should be approached with caution.
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Citations to this article as recorded by  
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