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Effective air purification could be put in schools at less cost - CIGA

Ballymena-based diagnostics firm CIGA Healthcare says its revolutionary, ceiling-mounted air purification device which will eradicate 99.9% of pathogens, including viruses, bacteria and moulds could be installed in 20,000 Northern Ireland classrooms for less than half the £100m currently being considered by Stormont ministers.

The PlasmaGuard range of devices which also features a covid detector has been designed for use in bars, restaurants, hospitals, schools and any interiors including offices and factories and is already in use in thousands of sites in America. The air purification system not only cleans the air but also all surfaces in the rooms fitted with the device. It uses proven non-thermal cold plasma technology and can be incorporated into existing air conditioning systems.

CIGA Healthcare CEO Irwin Armstrong, who sits on the board of Ulster University’s Connected Healthcare Innovation Centre, says the device is unlike any other air purification system and more advanced than any currently on the market.

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“Opening windows in a room is not a viable option particularly during the cold winter months and only a high quality clean air device will expel contaminates including the covid virus,” said Mr Armstrong.

Irwin Armstrong, CEO of CIGA Healthcare, holding the Plasmaguard PRO clean air device.

“The Plasmaguard device detects a change in your indoor air quality and the sensor notifies the smart hub to initiate the Plasmaguard to respond in real time. The system then operates to destroy the pollutants until the sensor verifies that your air is clean again,” says Mr Armstrong. “It is 99.994% effective against Covid-19. We are confident it is the best available solution for eradicating 99.9% of viruses, bacteria, mould, fungi, allergens, asthma triggers, odours and more, within any occupied environment,” he says. “Today, many facilities use highly ineffective simple dust filters, UV lighting, or weak ionizers. They have shown little evidence in providing safety from harmful airborne pathogens distributed through air conditioning systems”.

“Schools and education leaders are concerned about the spread of Covid-19 in classrooms and we believe the tested and proven PlasmaGuard is the best solution.”

CIGA Healthcare was established in 2005 by Irwin Armstrong and has grown rapidly over the years. Based in Ballymena the firm now supplies a wide range of over-the-counter and professional tests to pharmacies and healthcare services under its own brand Suresign. The company employs 32 at its Ballymena site.