Architects, Facility Managers and Contractors Gather to Discuss Best Practices in Containing Pathogens During Healthcare Construction Work

The Builders Association hosted a diverse group of construction professionals recently for a gathering to discuss protecting patients and staff members during occupied healthcare facility building projects.

The seminar was led by one of the region's leading healthcare facility construction experts: Jeffrey Clair, infection control construction manager at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Mr. Clair served as the subject matter expert for a training and certification program taught to thousands of construction crews, architects, and hospital personnel working at healthcare facility building projects throughout North America.

"The Hospital as the Patient: Infection Prevention During Healthcare Construction," was the title of the lecture given by Clair to launch the event. 

According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control, nearly 100,000 people die each year directly from, or because of secondary complications caused by hospital-acquired infections. Dust from construction work or pathogens sent airborne when walls, ceilings or floors are disturbed can be fatal if inhaled by immune-supressed patients. The germs can also cause healthy staff and construction workers to become seriously ill. Adding to the human costs are the medical costs of these infections, which range as high as $45 billion a year, according to the U.S. CDC.

"This is obviously a critical topic in the construction industry. We are happy to provide the opportunity for our members and area construction professionals to learn about best practices from an expert, and then discuss strategies with their colleagues," said Kevin Reilly, Executive Vice-President for The Builders.