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Sentinel Environmental Screening for the Coronavirus

Uncategorized Jul 06, 2020

New research from the US military shows that the SARS-CoV-2 virus can remain stable on the skin for 14-days. The higher the temperature, the lower the recovery. Therefore, the colder the environment, the longer the coronavirus persists on surfaces like skin, banknotes and even clothing. In this weeks Livestream I’m covering the role of ‘Sentinel monitoring’. This aims to test out selected high touch surfaces in an effort to detect the presymptomatic (before they show symptoms) and the asymptomatic (people who never show symptoms). New breaking research shows that swabbing the environment can detect those environments that are 10-times more likely to show a positive coronavirus case during clinical testing. The conclusion from the research is that environmental screening can help identify workplaces that are likely to hide spreaders! Surface testing in the environment should be used alongside clinical testing of people.

Of course, reach out to us if you need surface...

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Environmental Monitoring of Surfaces for a COVID-Safe Workplace

Uncategorized Jun 27, 2020

As Australia re-opens, some States like Victoria are experiencing a resurgence in case numbers.  Was it the protests, is it the returning travellers, is it the asymptomatic spread, is it the super-spreaders?  All valid questions, without clear answers...but what's your business to do IF you WANT and NEED to re-open but you want to do this SAFELY?

Modelling by scientists at the University of Melbourne provides forecast models for the spread of coronavirus infection across Australia and at the State level.  below is the graph for Victoria updated on Saturday 27th June 2020.

In today's Livestream I want to speak about the important role of surface contamination.  We all know that hand sanitiser and regular hand washing is globally promoted as a mandatory step - but have you stopped to think about all the reasons why?  Obviously touching other people with a handshake is easily understood as a risky behaviour - but what about all the other things you touch...

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Asthma and the Older Cohort + Does Sunlight Influence Nosocomial Infections?

Uncategorized Jun 22, 2020

Have you ever wondered if some factors make asthma worse in older adults? Find out what are the Top 7 reasons why asthma can be made worse indoors. Once you know what they are, you can do something about limiting risk. I also want to look at the relationship between the environment - and in particular temperature - and how this is linked to rates of hospital acquired bloodborne infections. The results for bacteria and fungi will no doubt surprise you. Also it's our 52nd show, so we've been doing these weekly LiveStreams for 1year. Check out all the back episodes on YouTube @drcameronjones or listen to the podcasts on iTunes or your favourite streaming service or go to

TOP 7 Things Older People Should Be On The Lookout For To Reduce Their Levels Of Allergen Exposure:

1. Poor bathroom ventilation
2. No HEPA vacuum
3. Furry/feathered pets inside
4. Mould/moisture present
5. Dust
6. Pest/rodents
7. Cigarettes

Contrary to expectations: it was NOT warm and humid weather...

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What to do if you find mould in your new home during construction?

Uncategorized Jun 13, 2020

It could happen if there's been a lot of rain, a delay in  the building process, or if timber has sat out in the elements for too long before being covered?  Mould, mould and more mould...what do you do if you find this?  Well - this episode will cover this important topic.  Firstly: might not be as bad as you think!  Discuss the matter with your builder.  Discuss your health and safety concerns.  Discuss your asset value concerns and implications that mould might have for building integrity.  This episode will cover what we recommend.  Document, document, document is really our best advice.  When in doubt: test, test, test.  Remember the principal way to deal with mould is: SOURCE REMOVAL. 

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5 Fungal threats you might have missed due to COVID-19

Uncategorized Jun 06, 2020

With all the attention at the moment focussing on the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the rest of microbiology has taken somewhat of a backseat. While the COVID pandemic has restricted behaviour and led to 6.4M cases and 383,000 deaths, the number of illnesses and deaths caused by fungi is also of epic proportions at 800M and 1.6M deaths annually. With global warming a serious problem for humanity, I want this week to discuss some of the reasons that fungi are often neglected. I want to shed some light on why this is, and what we should be discussing. We'll look at forced evolution in the lab and why Temperature optima may well turn out to be the best predictor of the next fungal plague or infection illness. Will it turn on us or our agriculture crops? Thats the crux of food security - and mycotoxins and other direct infections do more than reduce our access to bananas! I'll also make a short review of some of the fungal catastrophes to put this into context as well as discuss what we know about...

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3 New Facts about COVID Fomites You Need to Know

Uncategorized May 29, 2020

The CDC changed their website and the twittersphere went into a panic, since there was a presumed change about surface contamination. Find out how fomite transmission in a hospital proved the point about surface risks. Also, we take a look at how sunlight can be used to decontaminate surfaces and what you need to know about alcohol based hand sanitiser. #COVID #fomites #covidsafe

Watch the Livestream about fomite or surface level contamination. What happened in South Africa?  How their experience informs about what needs to be considered in other urban environments. 

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How to validate cleaning using your phone for a COVID safe workplace

Uncategorized May 20, 2020

Turn your phone into a UV torch

Let me show you how you can quickly and inexpensively turn your mobile phone into as device that can 'see' in ultraviolet.  Being able to see in UV is useful if you want to double  check that your cleaners have done a good job.  Did you know that you can use a fluorescent highlighter to mark high touch items and then check with UV to see that it's been cleaned. 

This is very useful and important especially as economies around the world tentatively re-open.  Effective disinfectant cleaning must begin with care and attention to areas or items in the built environment that have a high probability of having shed coronavirus on them.  All you need is some sticky tape, a blue and a purple Sharpie and a fluorescent marker. 

Once you've made your 'UV lens' for the flash on your phone, go around your workplace and mark out some items you want to validate that your cleaners have cleaned.  Under UV light, these will...

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The COVID safe workplace and how to validate cleaning at your business

Uncategorized May 15, 2020

The social easing experiment and public health

In Australia like across much of the world, governments are grappling with how soon their local economies can start back up? While many scientists and doctors show considerable concern about exit strategies that are too fast - it is understood that quarantine can't last forever. These are weighty decisions, since easing social distancing restrictions will undoubtedly lead to unwanted infections and loss of life. In fact, the Chief Scientist at the WHO had the following to say about this.

How bad could it get?

And it could get worse according to Dr. Swaminathan

The important role of environmental cleaning to deal with potentially contaminated workplaces

In this week's Livestream I want to discuss one important aspect of infection control that will be important as the exit strategy gets underway. The role of transmission and how personal responsibility about hand hygiene along with care in the built environment can contribute...

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COVID Toes, loss of smell and preview of our survey results on COVID-safe workplaces

Uncategorized May 09, 2020

Two unusual symptoms to watch out for

The way humans behave is central to the ways in which SARS-CoV-2 can be transmitted. Whether it’s a cough or a sneeze or touching something that’s then handled by someone else, we need to change behaviour (and quickly) to minimize transmission in the absence of pharmaceutical interventions. In Australia, as coronavirus restrictions are relaxed and businesses are being encouraged to prepare for reopening, the risks once again loom for fresh wave/s of infection. So, what does COVID-safe awareness look like? Overarchingly, it’s using scientifically and medically valid information to make choices that minimize harm and in the first place, accessing this information and using it for self-education and then applying it for your own and others benefit.

This week, I want to focus some attention on 2 interesting papers. Both of them are about non-fever warning signs that the exposed and then infected individual may go on to develop into...

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Preparing for a COVID-safe workplace and environmental surface testing for SARS-CoV-2

Uncategorized May 01, 2020

Preparing for a post pandemic world

Social easing restrictions will eventually happen - but what does the research say? In today’s episode we’ll be reviewing what the literature says about direct and non-contact forms of virus transmission. I’ve just published a review paper on “Environmental Surface Contamination” and I’ll be picking out the key points. In the media today, there’s some potential good news regarding how businesses should prepare for reopening. But what should they be considering? The Employment Minister, @senatormichaeliacash suggests that retailers create “COVID-safe workplaces”.

Businesses urged to create COVID-safe workplaces

With this in mind, I’ll be setting out some valuable information about surface contamination and what areas and items should be carefully monitored and screened. Apart from simply cleaning more carefully, some workplaces should be considering updates to their cleaning audits and...

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