Lisa Brettelle, Lead Estates Business Performance Manager, is responsible for a team that deliver a wide range of property management services for mixed use, health and social care (LIFT) buildings across London and the South of England. In this short article, Lisa reflects on recent experiences as a result of COVID-19, and in particular, the issues that Building Managers need to consider around ventilation and air conditioning in buildings in controlling the risk of virus transmission.
BSRIA (Building Services Research and Information Association) recently surveyed key HVAC industry stakeholders to define market changes and trends post COVID-19. I was particularly interested in the research findings and how they resonated with my experiences across our existing estate, and also in plans for new builds.
Responses from the survey brought forward a variety of changes that are happening across sectors, many of which are pertinent to our work within the health and social care sector:
Increased interest in filtration and indoor air quality (IAQ).
Remote activity on the rise: remote working, remote monitoring, remote training.
Efforts to enhance existing technology to adopt new ways of communicating.
Step back and review attitude, with consultants busy but contractors quiet.
Shift of interest towards replacement rather than new build market.
Customers building stock in case there is a second wave of the pandemic.
Projects on hold/lack of orders/uncertainty about the future.
Experience has already shown me and the gbpartnerships team, that there is an upturn in the requirement for improved ventilation, particularly in Dental practices; but are the guidelines clearly defined?
Poor ventilation is associated with the transmission of respiratory infections and there has been an increase in cases in indoor spaces. However, the use of improved ventilation and benefits of reducing COVID-19 is yet to be determined.
The World health Organisation (WHO) has contributed to guidance on ventilation and air-conditioning systems and the impact on the spread of COVID. They have advised that ventilation is an important factor in preventing the spread of the virus indoors. WHO has recommend a range of steps to consider which can improve indoor ventilation, including increasing ventilation rates through natural or mechanical means. The full range of recommendations can be read here.
With an evolving situation, it’s important that that the steps should be considered in consultation with a heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) professional.
gbpartnerships can help. If you’d like to get in touch, please email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org and a member of the team will get in touch.
gbpartnerships deliver property management services for 13 LIFT Companies across the country and manage a property portfolio of over 70 buildings, worth c.£850m. This important work is delivered under Management Services Agreements (MSAs) which include finance, estates management and business development services.
Find out more about the Property Management team here.