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Environmental Newsletter

September 2023

Every day, Clark Seif Clark professionals are deployed across the nation helping both large and small customers resolve health & safety, industrial hygiene, environmental and indoor air quality issues.

At a moment's notice, Clark Seif Clark can send their experts anywhere they are needed. No matter if it's in response to a hurricane, wildfire, flood, tornado or other natural disaster, Clark Seif Clark is ready to help and can respond in no time at all.
Staphylococcus aureus and Mitigating Exposure Risks in Occupational, Healthcare and Community Settings
Frequently referred to as staph, Staphylococcus aureus is a type of bacteria that is commonly found on the skin and hair, as well as in the nose and throat of people and animals. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that about 30% of people carry Staphylococcus aureus in their nose.

While most of the time staph does not cause harm to healthy individuals, it has long been recognized as a cause of infections for at risk individuals. These range from minor skin infections to serious infections that can be fatal in some circumstances. This is especially true in healthcare environments where patients may have a weakened immune system or have undergone medical procedures that make them more susceptible to infections. 
Staph infections can be caused by different types of the bacteria, including some that are resistant to certain antibiotics. The various types include:
  • Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)
  • Methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA)
  • Vancomycin-intermediate Staphylococcus aureus (VISA)
  • Vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (VRSA)

“Bacteremia or sepsis, pneumonia, endocarditis and osteomyelitis are some of the conditions that can be caused by Staphylococcus aureus,” said Franco Seif, President of Clark Seif Clark (CSC). “The risk of developing an infection increases with vulnerable populations that are subject to crowding, frequent skin-to-skin contact, compromised skin, contact with contaminated items and surfaces, and a general lack of cleanliness. Outbreaks have occurred in hospitals, athletic facilities, schools and daycare centers, military barracks, correctional facilities, and businesses and institutions.”

Dedicated to helping prevent the spread of pathogens in the built environment are the infection control and indoor environmental quality (IEQ) professionals at CSC. Their experts provide clients with building science, infection control and personal protective equipment educational resources. CSC offers consulting services, training and environmental testing to confirm cleaning and disinfection protocols are effective. They even sponsored an educational video about Staphylococcus aureus exposure risks recently that can be seen below: 
To learn more about this or other infection control, indoor air quality, industrial hygiene, environmental, health and safety services, please:
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Resources to Optimize the Indoor Air Quality of Schools and Universities 

Millions of students and teachers return to classrooms for the new school year during the months of August and September. While the COVID pandemic brought new attention to the importance of indoor air quality (IAQ) at schools and universities, it has been known for years that student performance and attendance can be impacted by IAQ conditions.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been advocating for programs that promote healthy IAQ to improve health, increase students’ ability to learn, improve test scores and also improve adult productivity in the school system for long before the pandemic. The agency warns that failing to prevent or respond promptly to IAQ problems can increase long- and short-term health effects for students and staff, such as:
  • Coughing
  • Eye irritation
  • Headaches
  • Allergic reactions
  • Aggravate asthma and/or other respiratory illnesses
  • In rare cases, contribute to life-threatening conditions such as Legionnaire’s disease or carbon monoxide poisoning

COVID resulted in a number of schools and universities taking steps to increase ventilation rates and invest in air purification and filtration systems to mitigate the spread of the virus. Those actions have also often helped to decrease exposure to other airborne viruses, mold, bacteria, chemicals, odors, particulate matter and other contaminants. These programs should be monitored to ensure they continue to work as planned. Unfortunately, some districts haven’t implemented these types of changes and continue to face challenges when it comes to providing environmental conditions that are conducive for student success.

To help in this effort, the building science and indoor air quality professionals at CSC offer facility assessments and inspections; HVAC system evaluations; 3rd party confirmation of cleaning and disinfection protocols; air, surface and water testing for environmental pathogens, heavy metals and asbestos; and training services to ensure school officials have the knowledge and expertise to optimize indoor conditions.
CSC also recently sponsored and educational video about the importance of IAQ for student performance that can be seen below:
To learn more about this or other indoor air quality, building science, environmental, health and safety services, please visit, email or call (800) 807-1118.
About Clark Seif Clark: CSC was established in 1989 to help clients in both the public and private sectors address environmental issues. CSC is a leading provider of these services with multiple offices along the western seaboard and southwest. The company believes in science-based protocols and has a strong background in engineering making them the preferred environmental consultants to healthcare facilities, architects, schools, builders, contractors, developers and real estate professionals.
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Chatsworth, CA 91311
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