Identification and characteristics of biological agents in work environment of medical emergency services in selected ambulances

OBJECTIVES: Assessment of microbial air quality and surface contamination in ambulances and administration offices as a control place without occupational exposure to biological agents; based on quantitative and qualitative analysis of bacteria, yeasts and filamentous fungi found in collected samples. MATERIAL AND METHODS: The sampling was done by wet cyclone technology using the Coriolis recon apparatus, imprint and swab methods, respectively. In total, 280 samples from 28 ambulances and 10 offices in Warszawa were tested. Data was analyzed using Shapiro-Wilk normality test, Kruskal-Wallis test with alpha = 0.05. P value <= 0.05 was considered as significant. RESULTS: The levels of air contamination were from 0 to 2.3x10¹ colony-forming unit (CFU)/m³ for bacteria and for yeast and filamentous fungi were from 0 to 1.8x10¹ CFU/m³. The assessment of office space air samples has shown the following numbers of microorganisms: bacteria from 3.0x10¹ to 4.2x10¹ CFU/m³ and yeast and filamentous fungi from 0 to 1.9x10¹ CFU/m³. For surface contamination the mean bacterial count in ambulances has been between 1.0x10¹ and 1.3x10² CFU/25 cm² and in offices - between 1.1x10¹ and 8.5x10¹ CFU/25 cm². Mean fungal count has reached the level from 2.8x10⁰ to 4.2x10¹ CFU/25 cm² in ambulances and 1.3x10¹ to 5.8x10¹ CFU/25 cm² in offices. The qualitative analysis has revealed the presence of Acinetobacter spp. (surfaces), coagulase - negative Staphylococci (air and surfaces), Aspergillus and Penicillium genera (air and surfaces). CONCLUSIONS: The study has revealed a satisfactory microbiological quantity of analyzed air and surface samples in both study and control environments. However, the presence of potentially pathogenic microorganisms in the air and on surfaces in ambulances may endanger the medical emergency staff and patients with infection. Disinfection and cleaning techniques therefore should be constantly developed and implemented.

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    • © 2017 Agata Bielawska-Drózd et al.
  • Authors:
    • Bielawska-Drózd, Agata
    • Cieślik, Piotr
    • Wlizło-Skowronek, Bożena
    • Winnicka, Izabela
    • Kubiak, Leszek
    • Jaroszuk-Ściseł, Jolanta
    • Depczyńska, Daria
    • Bohacz, Justyna
    • Korniłłowicz-Kowalska, Teresa
    • Skopińska-Różewska, Ewa
    • Kocik, Janusz
  • Publication Date: 2017

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  • English

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  • Accession Number: 01670722
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Mar 23 2018 3:47PM