News Column

Findings from Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in Risk Management Reported

June 28, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Obesity, Fitness & Wellness Week -- Current study results on Risk Management have been published. According to news reporting from Hong Kong, People's Republic of China, by NewsRx journalists, research stated, "Infectious particles can be deposited on surfaces. Susceptible persons who contacted these contaminated surfaces may transfer the pathogens to their mucous membranes via hands, leading to a risk of respiratory infection."

The news correspondents obtained a quote from the research from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, "The exposure and infection risk contributed by this transmission route depend on indoor surface material, ventilation, and human behavior. In this study, quantitative infection risk assessments were used to compare the significances of these factors. The risks of three pathogens, influenza A virus, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and rhinovirus, in an aircraft cabin and in a hospital ward were assessed. Results showed that reducing the contact rate is relatively more effective than increasing the ventilation rate to lower the infection risk. Nonfabric surface materials were found to be much more favorable in the indirect contact transmission for RSV and rhinovirus than fabric surface materials. In the cases considered in this study, halving the ventilation rate and doubling the hand contact rate to surfaces and the hand contact rate to mucous membranes would increase the risk by 3.7-16.2%, 34.4-94.2%, and 24.1-117.7%, respectively. Contacting contaminated nonfabric surfaces may pose an indirect contact risk up to three orders of magnitude higher than that of contacting contaminated fabric surfaces."

According to the news reporters, the research concluded: "These findings provide more consideration for infection control and building environmental design."

For more information on this research see: Effects of Surface Material, Ventilation, and Human Behavior on Indirect Contact Transmission Risk of Respiratory Infection. Risk Analysis, 2014;34(5):818-830. Risk Analysis can be contacted at: Wiley-Blackwell, 111 River St, Hoboken 07030-5774, NJ, USA. (Wiley-Blackwell -; Risk Analysis -

Our news journalists report that additional information may be obtained by contacting G.N. Sze-To, Hong Kong University of Science & Technology, Div Environm, Hong Kong, Hong Kong, People's Republic of China. Additional authors for this research include Y. Yang, J.K.C. Kwan, S.C.T. Yu and C.Y.H. Chao (see also Risk Management).

Keywords for this news article include: Asia, Hong Kong, Risk Management, People's Republic of China

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Source: Obesity, Fitness & Wellness Week

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