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Reducing the Risk of Pathogen Transmission in Indoor Environments: Focus on K-12 Schools and COVID-19 [Enduring]

Release Date: 10/19/2023
Expiration Date: 10/19/2025
Originally presented at Virtual NASN2022.

Cost: $20.00/Free for NASN members!

Upon successful completion of this offering,
participants will be awarded 1.0 Nursing Continuing Professional Development (NCPD) contact hour.

Instructions to Complete This NCPD Program
To receive a Certificate of Completion and be awarded NCPD contact hours for this program, follow the steps below, and complete and view the full content of the program including the program evaluation. If an assessment is included in the content, you will need to have 75% of the answers correct in order to pass the assessment. You will also have unlimited retakes on the assessment.

Step 1: Enroll in the program through the e-commerce system. Select the Purchase button. You will be directed to the e-commerce system. The program should already be in your shopping cart (look for the shopping cart icon at the top of the e-commerce web page). Select the shopping cart and choose "check out." You will receive a confirmation email with a link back to this program after your transaction.

Step 2: Complete and view the full content of the program. Content items are indexed at the bottom of this screen. After you enroll, you will return to this screen. The first content item will be “unlocked” so that you can begin completing the course. Subsequent items will “unlock” as you complete previous items.

Step 3: Retrieve the certificate.  After completing all content items, you will earn a certificate. You can save or print it.  Certificates are also stored in your Learning Center Profile.

Program Overview
Enhanced interventions (i.e., masking, physical distancing, hand hygiene, surface disinfection) to reduce the spread of COVID-19 have resulted in a significant decrease in the incidence of other communicable diseases including viral gastroenteritis and respiratory illnesses (e.g., influenza). Importantly, while SARS-CoV-2 is primarily spread by aerosols in buildings occupied by large numbers of individuals, such as schools, daycare centers, and office buildings, contaminated fomites may also play a role in transmission. Studies have demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 can survive on hands for hours and on environmental surfaces from hours to days. Thus, indirect transmission via hands may lead to infection by endemic coronaviruses. Studies have shown that SARS-CoV-2, influenza, RSV, and endemic coronaviruses that cause respiratory tract infections are rapidly inactivated by almost all commonly used, EPA-registered disinfectants when used according to directions. Another theoretical concern is the potential for re-aerosolization of respiratory viruses after they have settled onto surfaces. Re-aerosolization may occur by air movements in indoor environments or human activity (i.e., walking on a floor). Such aerosolized viruses could cause infection if inhaled. A new class of salinated polymeric compounds has been shown to be effective against these viruses for at least 24 hours. These “continuously acting compounds,” in addition to regular cleaning and disinfecting, help reduce the risk of virus transmission in indoor environments.

Learning Outcomes
As a result of participating in this educational activity, learners will be able to:

  • List three effective methods to prevent communicable disease transmission.
  • List three forms of transmission.
  • Name three COVID-19 signs or symptoms in children.
  • List two reasons surfaces are important in infectious disease transmission in facilities.
  • Name three areas to "target for disinfection" in your school.

Intended Audience
This continuing education program is a knowledge NCPD program developed to meet the educational needs of registered nurses who are interested in child, adolescent health, community/public health, and school nursing.


Charles P. Gerba, PhD
Professor, Microbiology & Environmental Sciences, Professor of Public Health
University of Arizona

Distinguished Professor of Medicine, Pediatrics & Epidemiology, Associate Chief Medical Officer, and Medical Director
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Faculty and Nurse Planner(s) Disclosures
NASN must ensure that all educational program content is free of commercial interest, bias, influence, and that the integrity of the content is uncompromised. The intent of this disclosure is to provide learners with information on which they can make their own judgments.

The nurse planner(s), faculty, and reviewers disclose there are no relevant financial relationships with ineligible companies for ALL those involved with the ability to control the content of this program.

Accreditation Statement
The National Association of School Nurses is accredited as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

Accredited status does not imply endorsement by NASN or ANCC of any commercial products discussed in this learning program.

Commercial Support or Grant Funding
This program did not receive commercial support or grant funding.