UV light disinfection systems are pictured at Central Peninsula Hospital on Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy of Bruce Richards)

UV light disinfection systems are pictured at Central Peninsula Hospital on Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy of Bruce Richards)

CPH gets disinfecting UV lights

The purchase was intended to help put additional disinfection units in places around the hospital

Four ultraviolet light disinfection systems purchased by the City of Soldotna were delivered to Central Peninsula Hospital earlier this month following a vote in favor of the purchase by the Soldotna City Council during their Nov. 12 meeting.

The hospital originally requested three UV lights, but submitted a request for a fourth light to be put at Heritage Place Skilled Nursing facility, which experienced a COVID-19 outbreak that saw more than half of all residents test positive. The council allocated additional funds so that a fourth light could be purchased during their meeting.

The cost of three systems was projected to be $165,000 but the addition of the fourth light bumped that total up to $220,000. The systems were purchased using CARES Act funds.

According to a memo from Soldotna City Manager Stephanie Queen, there were already two lights in use at CPH at the time the purchase was approved that had proved effective in disinfecting areas previously occupied by patients who were COVID-positive or who were suspected of having COVID-19.

The purchase was intended to help put additional disinfection units in places around the hospital where the need was greatest and to help increase the speed at which areas could be disinfected. Additionally, the addition of the new systems meant the existing systems would not be at as high of a risk for damage due to being moved around the hospital.

“As you all know, the hospital is a very large facility square footage-wise,” CPH External Affairs Director Bruce Richards said during the Nov. 12 meeting. “It takes a lot of time moving these lights around.”

Richards confirmed Monday that the four lights were delivered to the hospital on Dec. 10 and that they are currently in use in the hospital and in CPH’s Heritage Place Skilled Nursing facility. In addition to the light systems, Richards said the hospital also has VS light boxes that workers can put their phones, ID badges, stethoscopes, purses and other items into for disinfection.

As of Monday, CPH was treating five inpatients who were COVID-positive with no positive cases at Heritage Place.

Reach reporter Ashlyn O’Hara at ashlyn.ohara@peninsulaclarion.com.

UV light disinfection systems are pictured at Central Peninsula Hospital on Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy of Bruce Richards)

UV light disinfection systems are pictured at Central Peninsula Hospital on Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo courtesy of Bruce Richards)

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