Many disinfectants on EPA’s List N for institutional use against SARS-CoV-2 contain the active ingredient Quaternary ammonium. Quaternary ammonium compounds (QAC) are registered with the EPA as pesticides and increasingly are being found to cause serious health effects. Mount Sinai Selikoff Centers for Occupational Health report on Quaternary Ammonium Compounds for health professionals cautions QAC exposure from cleaning products for triggering asthma symptoms even in people with no prior asthma history, among other serious harmful impacts. Chlorine-based disinfectants also cause respiratory irritation and illness. Nurses’ regular use of disinfectants is associated with developing COPD, 24-32% higher.
The IPM in Health Care Facilities Project promotes safer pest and weed management best practices that are effective and protect the public and environment. Exposure to harmful pesticides can cause or exacerbate the very issues for which patients/residents are being treated. Especially during this challenging pandemic, we keep you updated on important news and research related to COVID-19 issues — from least toxic disinfectants to pesticides that do/do not exacerbate coronavirus symptoms. We support your efforts ensuring a protected and toxic-free environment for your facility and those you serve.
For more information about Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for your facility, contact the