Tuesday, 10 May 2016

AESG Launches Middle East’s First HEPA Filter Testing Service to Address Needs of Sterile Environments

Company to initially focus on delivery of service to Healthcare sector
Dubai, United Arab Emirates - 10 May, 2016 – In a bid to address a crucial market gap, AESG today announced the launch of its new HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter testing and certification service. Although vital to facilities such as operating theatres, pharmaceutical labs, and safety cabinets, this announcement marks the first time that such a service is being offered in the Middle East. AESG has invested heavily in both the skillsets and technologies required to deliver the service in accordance with BN EN 14664-1, which is understood to be the most stringent international cleanroom certification standard.
The consultancy firm believes the healthcare sector stands to gain the most benefit from this service as Gary Williams, Director of Commissioning at AESG explains, “The industry norm regarding HEPA filters today is an install and forget approach. Unfortunately, in the large majority of installations, due to factors such as rough handling, improper installation and poor maintenance, the likelihood of sub-optimal performance is extremely high. In highly sterile environments such as operating theatres and incubators, even slight contamination can result in a tremendously negative impact on patient health and so ensuring the effectiveness of HEPA filters is essential.”
AESG has worked closely with local regulatory authorities to ensure that its service can enable clients to achieve the highest level of standards compliance. The DOP (Dispersed Oil Particulate) testing equipment being utilized by the firm exceeds the British, American, European and Australian requirements for filter testing with aerosol challenge. According to Williams, his team can test for a pass rate of less than 0.01% of the most penetrative particles, and accurately uncover not only the inefficiencies but also the ‘difficult to pinpoint’ leakages.
Although it is standard practice to verify the manufacturer’s stated HEPA filter efficiency of 99.997% in situ, the actual performance of these systems is impacted by a number of factors. Therefore, to ensure the most comprehensive approach, AESG is offering testing of not only HEPA filters, but also their housing and installation. Despite the rigorous adherence to best practice and commitment to the highest standards of testing, AESG’s team of qualified professionals have been trained to conduct the testing process in under three hours.
The significance of this first of its kind service is emphasized by the fact that so far in the region, ineffective alternative methods are being utilized which pose a threat due to their shortcomings. “Some engineers consider the use of particle scanners. However, these are not sufficiently accurate and involve a margin of error that hospitals cannot afford to overlook. Furthermore, as these methods make it difficult to pinpoint the leakage, they make addressing and rectifying the issues a challenge,” stated Williams.
While AESG intends to initially focus on customers within the healthcare vertical, the firm also sees potential uptake in other sectors such as manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, and other industries wherein cleanroom facilities are utilized.