Last week, the Marion County Ambulance District added new equipment that will provide a safer environment for their patients and employees.

Last week, the Marion County Ambulance District added new equipment that will provide a safer environment for their patients and employees. The district purchased UV-C Disinfection lights, which will be used to help disinfect the ambulances, ambulance bases and equipment.

According to John Nemes, EMS chief/director of the Marion and Ralls County Ambulance Districts, the new technology has been proven to better protect patients and personnel from exposure to contagious organisms.

“These lamps, when used regularly, will provide 99.9999 percent disinfection and will kill all known bacteria, virus, mold, protozoa, and yeast,” he said. “When used in conjunction with topical cleaners, this technology will create a safe environment for all.”

In addition to killing virus and bacteria that may be present within the ambulance or on equipment, ambulance personnel will be able to disinfect the living areas and bedrooms at each facility. This technology can stop the transmission of viruses and bacteria that before may have caused colds and flu.

The UV-C light emitted from the unit is shortwave ultraviolet radiation and the UV rays make up part of the sun’s light spectrum. It is a well-known fact that the UV rays destroy microorganisms and they are highly germicidal by altering DNA to prevent reproduction, causing the organism to die, reports Nemes.

The cost of each light is $3,800. The district plans to have one located at each ambulance base and the administration/training building by the end of 2017.