Ottawa’s Perley and Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre is looking to apply the same technology that has been licensed for the reprocessing of N95 respirators, on the type of procedural masks more widely used in long-term care homes.

It’s launching a research study to see if the Canadoian-made Clean Flow Health Care Mini can decontaminate and sanitize medical face masks.

“The Ontario government challenged us to find innovative ways to address the COVID-19 pandemic. We think we have found one,” says Perley Rideau CEO Akos Hoffer. “The Clean Flow Health Care Mini promises to help us address the critical shortage of personal protective equipment at the same time as we find lasting, cost-effective, home-grown solutions to protect and promote the health and safety of our residents, long-term care staff, first responders, hospital and other essential workers.”

The Clean Flow Health Care Mini technology uses ultraviolet light, vaporized hydrogen peroxide and ozone to decontaminate and sanitize up to 800 masks per hour. It was developed by Clean Works of Beamsville and adapted from technology used in the agri-food industry.

The Perley and Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre received delivery of the first model off the Clean Works production line on April 6.

In addition to validating the technology’s three-step waterless process with procedural masks, the Perley Rideau has issued a call for collaboration to researchers in government and elsewhere to establish reprocessing protocols for all types of personal protective equipment (PPE).

The centre says a research collaboration focusing on N95 respirators has already been agreed to with CHEO.

“In times like these, it is wonderful to see not-for-profit long-term care providers taking bold steps to find solutions to benefit the broader sector,” says Lisa Levin, CEO, AdvantAge Ontario. “The Perley Rideau is demonstrating incredible leadership in joining forces with Ontario-based Clean Works to trial their innovative Clean Flow Health Care Mini to sanitize N95 and procedural masks. The brave men and women on the frontlines of health care who are tirelessly battling COVID-19 deserve to know that personal protective equipment is there when they need it. We applaud the Perley Rideau for this valuable contribution to that effort.”

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