Over the past 9 months Andersen Caledonia has been providing COVID-19 surface testing to a variety of customers, from private GP clinics to offices and hotels. The first of its kind in the UK, the results not only indicate the presence of SARS-CoV-2 but also the amount collected to indicate how heavily infected a surface is and the likelihood of fomite transmission. Our data shows that whilst positive samples from surfaces are rare, they do exist. This emphasises the importance of disinfecting our hands after being in public places. Our COVID-19 surface testing was featured on BBC Scotland and in Insider magazine, which can be found here.
A recent article in Nature provides a great overview of fomite transmission of SARS-CoV-2.
We have recently been added to the Department of Health and Social Care’s (DHSC) approved private provider list for PCR SARS-CoV-2 testing for swabs taken from humans. This allows us to work with selected GP practices, private clinics and other approved DHSC samplers to supply testing for Fit to Fly, Test to Release for international travel, and employer internal testing programmes. For more information, check out our dedicated COVID-19 Human Testing webpage.
We have also just submitted our documentation to UKAS for our extension to scope. We are optimistic we will be approved in the near future and become the first private lab in the West Midlands to be granted such approval.
An article by BMJ in July 2020 highlighted that airborne transmission of COVID-19 has been underestimated. 239 experts from 32 countries warned that people can be infected by microscopic respiratory droplets, produced by breathing and talking, that can remain in the air and travel many metres. Andersen Caledonia are currently running trials on a simple UVC fan unit which we plan to sell in the future. The Oxira Air Neutraliser supports air purification by destroying the DNA and proteins of viruses, including COVID-19, and stops them reproducing. The Oxira Air Neutraliser claims to be 99% effective against COVID-19 and will cost around £300. At only 0.5kg and 335 mm long, it has the potential to be a convenient, simple way to keep offices safer.