Facilities FAQS on Air Quality/ HVAC/Ventilation | Barriers | General Cleaning/Health Offices and Musical Instruments|Hand Sanitizers
NYSED Facilities FAQs are available on the Office of Facilities Planning website at:http://www.p12.nysed.gov/facplan/
- 08-26-2020 Reopening Plans Clarifications Memo on the repurposing of rooms, sneeze guards, desk separation-layout and hallway doors
- 08-21-2020 Guidance on UV light; ion generators; portable fans; window air conditioners; portable air cleaners
- 08-17-2020 Placement of Tent or Storage Container or Modular -FAQs
- 08-05-2020 COVID FAQs (link to referenced Submission Form During COVID 19 ReOpening)
They discuss building alterations, repurposing rooms, tents, determining social distancing, use of fans, ion generators and UV lighting technology, revised rules for plastic barriers and location of hand sanitizers. Very helpful regarding nurses discussing tents for nebulizing and questions we are getting on ion generators and UV lighting.
They discuss building alterations, repurposing rooms, tents, determining social distancing, use of ion generators and UV lighting technology, revised rules for plastic barriers and location of hand sanitizers. Very helpful regarding nurses discussing tents for nebulizing and questions we are getting on ion generators and UV lighting.
Where can I find information about air quality and HVAC systems, air purifiers, and Ozone emitting machines?
ASHRAE (American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers)
Provides information on the impact of ventilation and air conditioning in control of airborne exposure. ASHRAE has created an Epidemic Task Force with technical resources as it relates to the effects of heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning systems on disease transmission. Includes guidance on keeping HVAC systems functioning, use of air purifiers, etc.
Barriers|Polycarbonate and Plexiglass
Where can I find information on the installation of barriers to reduce transmission?
Questions about modifying a school building or installing barriers should be directed to the Office of Facilities.
Office of Facilities Planning
Room 1060 Education Building Annex
The New York State Education Department
Telephone: 518-474-3906 Email: email@example.com
This memo provides additional information:
7/30/20 NYSED has revised flammability standards for plastic glazing used to construct sneeze guards or separators. In Response to COVID 19, School Districts are anticipating reopening and are beginning to install clear plastic sneeze guards at locations where school operations and activities require staff and students to make face-to-face contact with each other.
Where can I find resources on facility cleaning in schools?
- COVID-19 Webpage provides key EPA resources on COVID-19 including webinars, fact sheets, and resources on cleaning, disinfectants, PPE and air quality)
- EPA Healthy Schools Webpage
- Interim Cleaning and Disinfection Guidance for Primary and Secondary Schools for COVID-19 (NYSDOH 3/9/20
World Health Organization (WHO)
Where can I find information on cleaning musical equipment in schools?
- National Federation of State High Schools (NFHS), NAfME, and the NAMM Foundation guidelines for handling musical instruments during the COVID-19 school shutdown period. These guidelines are designed for use by music educators and educators may use these guidelines when teaching students and parents how to clean instruments.
- American Music Therapy Association
- U.S. Army Band Mitigation Plan
- Wind Instrument Aerosols in the era of COVID
Where can I find information on cleaning school health office equipment?
Equipment can be cleaned between students – following the manufacturer’s’ directions. The links below are provided for informational purposes only and do not infer the promotion of any products.
- Otoscope care and cleaning can be found here. It is recommended disposable specula be used. They are inexpensive and assure there is no cross-contamination.
- Thermometer units can be wiped with 70% isopropyl alcohol solution and disposable probes/sheaths can be used. Schools can also purchase disposable thermometers – these were a recommendation during H1N1 to allow nurses to assess many students at the same time more quickly. This is an example
- Sphygmomanometer cleaning options can be found here.
- Stethoscopes can be wiped with a 70% isopropyl alcohol solution. Hand sanitizer should not be used as a cleaning agent as there are additives that may damage parts of the stethoscope, nor should the stethoscope be immersed in any liquid, or subject it to any sterilization process.
- Alcohol Prep Wipes are another option for wiping instrumentation.
Where can I find information on how long COVID-19 lives on surfaces?
Where can I find resources on the transfer of materials between home and school?
Decisions regarding the transfer of materials between school and home should be based on evidence on the transmission of COVID19. View the document Guidance for School Nurses to Safely Send and Receive Resources Between School and Home During COVID-19. This document and more found on NASN's Coronavirus Disease 2019 Resources web page.
Where can I find information on Hand Sanitizers?
The Director of School Health Services (a.k.a Medical Director) may approve and permit the use of Alcohol-Based Hand Sanitizers (ABHS) for use in their facilities without individual physician orders. Please see the NYSED Memo, Handwashing Recommendations and Alcohol-based Hand Sanitizer Use in Schools (NYSED3/5/20)
Is hand sanitizer effective against COVID-19?
The CDC advised that the best way to prevent the spread of infections and decrease the risk of getting sick is by washing your hands with plain soap and water. Washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is essential, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after coughing, sneezing, or blowing one’s nose. If soap and water are not available, CDC recommends consumers use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
Is it ok to use non-alcohol-based hand sanitizer instead of alcohol-based hand sanitizer? Is it ok to use hand sanitizer with benzalkonium chloride instead of alcohol-based hand sanitizer? Is non-alcohol-based hand sanitizer effective against COVID-19? (FDA Response)
There are currently no drugs, including hand sanitizer, approved by FDA to prevent or treat COVID-19. The best way to prevent the spread of infections and decrease the risk of getting sick is by washing your hands with plain soap and water, advises the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is essential, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after coughing, sneezing, or blowing one’s nose. If soap and water are not available, CDC recommends consumers use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% ethanol.
While they are not alcohol-based, and thus not recommended by CDC, there are some hand sanitizer products containing benzalkonium chloride as an active ingredient that may be legally marketed if they meet the requirements for marketing under section 505G of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. However, as noted above, there are no hand sanitizers, including those containing benzalkonium chloride, that are legally marketed specifically for the prevention or treatment of COVID-19. Hand sanitizers using active ingredients other than alcohol (ethanol), isopropyl alcohol, or benzalkonium chloride are not legally marketed, and FDA recommends that consumers avoid their use.
Hand sanitizer prepared under FDA’s temporary policies during the COVID-19 public health emergency, as outlined in the guidances, cover only alcohol-based (ethanol and isopropyl alcohol) hand sanitizer. FDA’s temporary policies do not cover the use of other active or inactive ingredients not otherwise mentioned in the guidance for use in hand sanitizer, including benzalkonium chloride.
See the following resources for more information:
- The FDA website provides a Q and A on the use, safety, and effectiveness of hand sanitizers. Alcohol-based Hand Sanitizer is the recommended product for use in reducing transmission for COVID-19. You can read all of the Q and A on the FDA website Q&A for Consumers: Hand Sanitizers and COVID-19 page.
- The NYSCSH Hand Sanitizer Resource page has sample guidance for schools including product selection, storage and handling, a procedure for use, and a sample parent notification letter.
- The NYSCSH School Medical Director page has additional guidance on the use of Alcohol-Based Hand Sanitizers for medical directors.
- The NYSED Office of Facilities Planning oversees fire safety and other requirements for school buildings. You may contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org or 518-474-3906, regarding concerns or questions.
- Please contact NYSED Office of Student Support Services regarding Hand Sanitizer use in schools.
- As noted in prior NYSED memos, hand sanitizers contain alcohol and are flammable. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer dispensers are permitted to be installed in rooms and corridors in limited quantities in accordance with FCNYS 2020 Section 5705.5. This information and other details around the use of ABHS in school are located on pages 27 and 28 of the NYSED Re-Opening Guidance Document.
Page updated 2/20/21