Gov. Northam: Blacksburg to receive Critical Care Decontamination System


FILE – Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam gestures during a news conference at the Capitol Wednesday April 8, 2020, in Richmond, Va. Northam gave an update on his Covid-19 plans. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

RICHMOND, Va. (WFXR) — Governor Northam announced Saturday that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) approved Virginia to receive three Battelle Critical Care Decontamination System (CCDS), one of which will be in Blacksburg.

The systems can collectively sterilize up to 240,000 units of personal protective equipment (PPE) per day for reuse. Three locations in Virginia will receive CCDS in the next week: Blacksburg, Newport News, and Chesterfield County.

According to Northam’s office, the Battelle CCDS uses a concentrated hydrogen peroxide vapor to decontaminate N95 masks, which can last up to 20 decontamination cycles before degrading filtration performance. This technology helps to address the national shortage of PPE.

“An ongoing, stable supply of PPE is key to moving Virginia forward from the COVID-19 pandemic . . . This innovative new technology will extend the life of critical PPE like N95 masks, giving our medical facilities and first responders greater access to much-needed supplies and helping the Commonwealth manage our resources amid a nationwide shortage.”

Governor Ralph Northam

The system will be installed at the Marching Virginians Center on the Virginia Tech campus to support Virginia and the West Virginia Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. West Virginia has provided generators through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact.

The Battelle CCDS will be made available for use by other states to include Tennessee, Kentucky, and North Carolina.

The systems are federally funded through FEMA and the Defense Logistics Agency, so this will not cost health care providers for the first six months of use.

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