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Wood use in a hospital environment: VOC emissions and air quality

Die Verwendung von Holz in Krankenhäusern: VOC-Emissionen und Luftqualität


The impact of wood use in a hospital environment was assessed. This study is part of an assessment of possible health benefits when using wooden materials in patient rooms. Indoor air quality and climate due to the influence of furnishing materials are therefore studied. VOC air concentration was measured in hospital rooms. Three different room designs were investigated: (1) regular hospital rooms without wooden panels (N=4), (2) rooms with a wall panel made from birch wood (N=2) and (3) rooms with a wall panel made from oak wood (N=2). The rooms are situated in a newly built hospital in Norway. No significant differences in VOC air concentrations were found between the three room designs. The use of wooden wall panels in hospital rooms has no effect on the amount of VOC in the indoor environment in this type of room.

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The authors would like the acknowledge support from The Norwegian Research Council (grant number 186174), The Norwegian Sawmill Industries Association, The Norwegian Forest Owners’ Federation, The Norwegian Joinery Manufacturers Association and Fondet for treteknisk forskning to carry out the research. We would also like to thank the Environmental Advisor Jarle Svanæs, OPAK, for providing assistance with carrying out the VOC measurements.

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Correspondence to Anders Q. Nyrud.

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Nyrud, A.Q., Bringslimark, T. & Englund, F. Wood use in a hospital environment: VOC emissions and air quality. Eur. J. Wood Prod. 70, 541–543 (2012).

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  • Monoterpene
  • Wall Panel
  • Hospital Room
  • Indoor Climate
  • Window View