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The role of antimicrobial furniture is growing in multi-space offices and meeting rooms

Antimicrobial ISKU+ furniture creates value in public and shared spaces where people meet. Such facilities include multi-purpose offices, customer service points, schools as well as waiting and reception facilities at health centers

Antimicrobial surfaces inhibit microbial growth

The number of microbes plays a key role in the spread of infections in public areas. This amount can be reduced through good hand hygiene, regular cleaning and antimicrobial surfaces. This will cut off infection chains, reducing the number of harmful infections.

The efficacy of antimicrobial surfaces does not decay over time – the feature works tirelessly around the clock. Antimicrobial activity prevents microbial growth on contact surfaces. There is wide variation in the survival rate of individual bacteria and viruses, for example on furniture surfaces. Antimicrobial surfaces have been shown to reduce this survival time to a fraction of the normal survival time for many microbes.

Sick leave is a major cost for businesses

The price per employee on sick leave derives from direct and indirect costs and productivity losses. In Finland the unit price for one sick leave day can be estimated to settle between €300 and €500 based on the salaries. Generally, higher social security and higher salaries lead to higher unit price for sick leaves per employee.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Foundation in the United States, worker illness and injury costs U.S. employers $225.8 billion annually, $1.685 per employee. Also, it is estimated that 60 per cent of these costs are driven by employees working while being sick.(3) The spread of microbes and infections play a key role in these figures.

Studies have shown that antimicrobial contact surfaces can reduce short-term absenteeism due to sickness by up to 50 per cent.(1) This reduction brings significant business benefits via increased productivity and wellbeing in the work community.

Tyo2020 antimikrobisuus LAB

At LAB University of Applied Sciences antimicrobial materials are used in multi-purpose space e.g. in shared workstations.

Antimicrobial surfaces for critical surfaces and shared areas

The choice of antimicrobial materials for the most critical surfaces in multipurpose areas and furniture groups is especially important. Antimicrobial furniture has potential in improving business efficiency and wellbeing at work. Reduced sick leave as a financing solution is one of the best services that ISKU can offer its customers

”The antimicrobial technology of ISKU furniture is a permanent feature that inhibits the growth of microbes. This also means better hygiene, less contamination of surfaces and lengthened material life”, Kari Soljamo, ISKU development manager and Doctor of chemistry.

All our furniture is available with antimicrobial materials. ISKU’s product range also includes brass products, which has been shown to eliminate microbes, including COVID-19.(2) For other technologies, research and testing are still ongoing but there has been positive results with other types of corona virus already.

  1. Study by Anni Hyvönen, Living Lab case study on antimicrobial surfaces, 2018
  2. Van Doremalen, N., Bushmaker, T., Morris, D. H., Holbrook, M. G., Gamble, A., Williamson, B. N., Lloyd-Smith, J. O. et al. (2020). Aerosol and surface stability of SARS-CoV-2 as compared with SARS-CoV-1
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Foundation, 28.1.2015, Worker Illness and Injury Costs U.S. Employers $225.8 Billion Annuallyce stability of SARS-CoV-2 as compared with SARS-CoV-1

Download Work 2020, a guide on how to organize working environment after the exceptional situation

It is already evident that the need for safety and versatility will increase in the future. As remote working is becoming more common, it opens up new opportunities for development - would it be a right time to modernize working environment into a multi-space office?