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Hospital using machines that send out ultraviolet light to kill bacteria, viruses

Lehigh Valley Hospital-Schuylkill started using the technology recently.

SCHUYLKILL COUNTY, Pa. — Contact tracing and sanitizing technology have become increasingly important due to the coronavirus. In addition to businesses, many hospitals across the country have invested in that equipment to help keep their facilities, employees, and patients safe. That includes Lehigh Valley Hospital-Schuylkill in Pottsville, where Surfacide machines were recently introduced.

"With the rise of more infectious diseases that we're discovering, more bacteria that we're finding, this technology has taken a forefront in helping us to ensure that the areas are clean and sanitized," Terry Wagner of LHV-Schuylkill said. 

The three machines, which are a little more than 6 feet tall use ultraviolet light to kill any viruses, bacteria, and germs that may remain after the hospital goes through its normal cleaning practices. They can all be controlled remotely, so the process is pretty simple. Activate them with an iPad from another room to avoid any harm from the ultraviolet rays and let the machines do work.

"This is that extra level of clean to guarantee that the community coming into the hospital will have a nice, clean sanitized space," Wagner added.

As for the effectiveness of these machines, they can clean a room in as little as 10 to 15 minutes, and they can be used all throughout the hospital.

"We first target any invasive space or anywhere an invasive procedure is completed, radiology, operating rooms. We also do X-ray rooms, CAT scan rooms, we do public bathrooms," Wagner said.