Assessment and Improvement of Anti-COVID-19 Measures in Higher Education Establishments

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COVID-19 Risk Factors and Symptoms

All ages, including children, adults, and the elderly, are exposed to COVID-19 infection. Most infected persons showed mild to moderate illness and recovered without special treatment and hospitalization.
Nonetheless, infection severity depends on two main factors: (a) human factors like patient age, sex, immune system, blood group, personal hygiene, underline diseases, and health problems, and (b) environmental factors such as humidity, temperature, and CO2 (Huang et al., 2020; Q. Li et al., 2020; T. Liu et al., 2020).
Therefore, vulnerable persons such as the elderly or persons with health problems like lung or heart disease, diabetes, cancer, or circumstances that disturb their immune system are more prone to high risk that might cause fatality (Huang et al., 2020; Q. Li et al., 2020). Only rare cases have been detected for infants and children’s infections and have shown that children are very rarely exposed to a high risk of COVID-19 infection (Jiehao et al., 2020). Also, statistics have shown that male is more exposed to the virus compared to females (Q. Li et al., 2020). Additionally, studies have been determined that individuals with blood group O may be protected from severe COVID-19 due to low ACE present in this blood group that the virus can use as a receptor for entry. In contrast, persons with blood group A are more disposed to severe COVID-19 infection (J. Zhao et al., 2020). Symptoms could be classified into three main types regarding their severity :(a) mild symptoms at onset of COVID-19 illness are fever, dry cough, and tiredness, (b) moderate symptoms are sore throat, aches and pains, headache, diarrhea, loss of taste and smell, rash on skin and conjunctivitis, and (c) serious symptoms such trouble in breathing, chest pain or pressure, loss of speech or movement that can face vulnerable persons (Huang et al., 2020; Q. Li et al., 2020). WHO reported a study showing the frequencies of the three symptoms types in China. This study was adopted considering 55,924 laboratories and using records from the beginning of the outbreak up to February 2020 (Figure 4.1). Accordingly, it was noticed that the mild symptoms are the most frequent comparing to the moderate and serious symptoms.

COVID-19 Prevention Measures

Due to the slow vaccination rate and the absence of efficient medication for COVID-19, countries, and organizations imposed protective measures to limit the virus spread. The WHO recommended commitments to personal protection measures (e.g., use of hand sanitizing, surfaces disinfection, face mask) and physical distancing measures (WHO, 2020). On the other hand, governments organized awareness campaigns concerning the risk of COVID-19, its symptoms, transmission modes, and prevention methods, and they encouraged online learning (Oluwaseun & Oluwole, 2020). Safety measures were imposed worldwide and suggested by the WHO:
• Wash hands for 20 seconds frequently.
• Use hand sanitizer in case of the unavailability of soap and water with at least 60% alcohol.
• Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue and throw it away directly.
• Avoid touching the face, especially the eyes, nose, and mouth, with uncleaned hands.
• Disinfect surfaces such as buttons, tables, handles, and others before touching them.
• Keep at least one meter as social distancing with others.
• Wear a face mask.
Many governments took other measures:
• Self-quarantine up to 14 days after travel or do the COVID-19 test before the travel.
• Airports and border closure between regions and countries.
• Stop the planned events and closure of crowding places like restaurants, malls, museums.
• Boosts telework and online learning.
• Impose curfew and limit the shifting only for necessary purposes.
Additionally, COVID-19 high transmission persuades most countries to force people to stay home by doing a lockdown. In the lockdown period, the government policy was responsible for following and control the human practice for government rules by imposing penalties. Concerning the safety measures for educational establishments, in some countries, such as France, the Ministry of Education allowed higher education establishments to open with a maximum of 50% occupancy in classrooms with the necessary safety measures (APUAF, 2020). The universities face unique challenges in providing in-person instruction during the COVID-19 pandemic (Smalley, 2021). They have to figure out a set of modifications and improvements to regular operations to protect students and staff (Gressman & Peck, 2020). Researchers in Taiwan suggested that higher education establishments could reopen safely with a combination of approaches that comprise containment (access control) and mitigation (sanitation, ventilation, and physical distancing) practices (S. Y. Cheng et al., 2020).
The virus spread has pushed the world to change and introduce new concepts and rules to their daily habits, especially in common spaces, such as sanitizers and social distancing (SD) requirements. Several national and international groups of expertise proposed guidelines to implement anti-COVID-19 measures. For example, the MASS group, which specialized in designing a living environment, established a guideline for redesigning restaurant spaces (Klein, 2020). In addition, Working Groups (WGs) suggested a document helping school managers to redesign schools through sustainable actions (Robiglio, 2020). Higher education establishments are concerned by the evaluation and improvement of anti-COVID-19 measures. Recently, Vozzoli (2020) proposed tools to improve the anti-COVID-19 measures in schools, universities, and workplaces (Vozzola, 2020).

Smart Building beyond COVID-19

Hazard mitigation required a focus continuously on applying measures to decrease the risk. According to Megahed & Ghoneim (2021), COVID-19 hazard control should involve the following layers of defense inside buildings (Megahed & Ghoneim, 2021):
• Hazard elimination: understand the COVID-19 symptoms and mode of transmission.
• Engineering and construction control: re-design or adjust building configuration, functions, and systems to incorporate healthier building strategies.
• Administrative and technical controls: instructing individuals on what to do based on the updates and new measures.
• Personal protective equipment: related to the people protection from the virus because people are the key source of the virus transmission.
• Measures Implementation: provide the necessary safety measures inside the building.
Researchers and enterprises are altering in response to the COVID-19 challenge by providing new innovative solutions. Technology has a significant role in keeping people safe, especially over smart building technologies in private and public buildings (Hatcher, 2020). Smart Buildings will permit the employees to return to work and public buildings to reopen their doors again. Smart buildings are generally more related to environmental management and security; now, the integration of IoT sensors and smart buildings can also support applications useful for safely monitoring and managing coronavirus risk (Hatcher, 2020). The owners can get real-time data regarding building safety against COVID-19 transmission using the smart building, exclusively for tasks such as building access control, monitoring HVAC systems, and tracking density within spaces, and surface cleaning.

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Building access (BA) control

Cameras already contribute to site security by automatically monitoring entrances and traffic in buildings. They can also become a means of reducing the transmission from the building access (BA) control, typically:
• At the building entrance, a camera can detect whether or not the mask is worn. If this measure is made mandatory by company policy or the public authorities, access to the site may be blocked automatically by access control gates. This measure is particularly effective for large sites with many entrances that cannot all be controlled by a human.
• The use of a thermal camera (TC) makes it possible to assess body temperature and, for example, inform building managers of suspected cases. This device can be installed at the entrance to filter access and in other areas to alert on cases of developing fever symptoms on users already present in the building.
Some of this equipment blurs the stored images or does not store them, anonymizing the people filmed. However, it must be ensured that the thermal sensitivity meets the desired need.
The smart cameras could help monitor the building occupancy, SD, and ensure the face masks use. In addition, with the AI technology integration, the owners could detect the crowded zones to take the necessary actions. Similarly, Hatcher (2020) highlighted that thermal imaging cameras and occupancy monitoring systems are some of the strongest solutions to fight against COVID-19 (Hatcher, 2020). For example, Narita Airport in Japan uses thermal cameras to identify the passenger’s temperature (Verdentix, 2020).

Occupation of building spaces

Counting people is possible thanks to many technologies. For example, through cameras or count sensors installed at the entrance or other spaces.
• After access control, the smart building use can quickly identify the current occupation in the different areas of the building.
• In a room, if the number of people present is greater than the health rule established, a signal may invite the occupants to return to the authorized threshold.
• The manager has a real-time monitoring tool that allows him to configure alerts such as sending an email if the occupancy threshold defined for a zone is exceeded. It can also perform more in-depth analyzes over the desired period.

Table of contents :

Table of Contents
Table of Figures
Table of Tables
Chapter 0: General Introduction
Chapter 1: State of the Art – Literature Review
1.1. Introduction
1.2. Indoor Hazards
1.1. BIM for Risk Management
1.1.1. BIM Overview
1.1.2. Risk Management Overview
1.1.3. Risk Management Process
1.1.4. BIM Application for Risk Management
1.2. Smart Building for Indoor Safety
1.2.1. Smart Building Background
1.2.2. Internet of Things (IoT) Services for Smart Buildings
1.2.3. Artificial Intelligence (AI) for Smart Buildings
1.3. Use of Smart Building for Human Health
1.3.1. Indoor Air Pollution (IAP)
1.3.2. Fall Detection
1.3.3. Real-Time Health Monitoring Systems
1.4. Use of Smart Building for Indoor Safety
1.4.1. Fire Hazard
1.4.2. Electrical faults
1.4.3. Gas Leak
1.4.4. Water Leak
1.5. Use of Smart Building for Security
1.5.1. Indoor Crime Prevention
1.6. Conclusion
Chapter 2: Research Methodology
2.1. Introduction
2.2. System General Architecture
2.2.1. Data Collection Layer
2.2.2. Data Transmission and processing
2.2.3. Data Analysis
2.2.4. Control Layer
2.2.5. Smart Services
2.3. System Operation Mechanism
2.4. Role of BIM
2.5. Use of Artificial Intelligence (AI)
2.6. Monitoring and Decision Making per Hazard
2.6.1. Fire Hazard
2.6.2. Electrical Faults
2.6.3. Indoor Air Pollution (IAP)
2.6.4. Gas Leak
2.6.5. Water Leak
2.6.6. Intrusion and Crime
2.6.7. Health Hazard
2.7. Synthesis of System Monitor and Control
2.8. Conclusion
Chapter 3: A BIM-based Smart System for Fire Evacuation
3.1. Introduction
3.2. Literature Review
3.2.1. Space Management
3.2.2. Early Detection
3.2.3. Evacuation Management
3.2.4. Simulations
3.2.5. BIM for Fire Evacuation Management
3.3. Materials and Methods
3.3.1. Smart evacuation system framework
3.3.2. Fire evacuation system operation mechanism
3.4. Application to a research building of Lille University
3.4.1. Presentation of the building
3.4.2. Fire Simulation
3.4.3. Agent-based Evacuation Simulation (ABS)
3.4.4. Use of BIM for evacuation management
3.5. Conclusion
Chapter 4: Assessment and Improvement of Anti-COVID-19 Measures in Higher Education Establishments
4.1. Introduction
4.2. Literature Review
4.2.1. Method of Transmission
4.2.2. COVID-19 Risk Factors and Symptoms
4.2.3. COVID-19 Prevention Measures
4.2.4. Smart Building beyond COVID-19
4.2.5. Digital technologies and AI Implementation for COVID-19
4.2.6. BIM implementation for COVID-19
4.3. Materials and Methods
4.3.1. Methodology
4.3.2. Application to the engineering school Polytech’Lille
4.3.3. Anti-COVID-19 measures at Polytech’Lille
4.3.4. Use of a questionnaire for the assessment of anti-COVID-19 measures
4.4. Results and Discussion
4.4.1. Students’ Profile
4.4.2. Students’ evaluation of the anti-COVID-19 measures
4.4.3. Students’ commitment to anti-COVID-19 measures
4.4.4. Students’ opinion about additional anti-COVID-19 measures
4.5. Improvement of anti-COVID-19 measures
4.6. Recommendations for additional measures
4.6.1. Thermal Camera (TC)
4.6.2. Surveillance Cameras (SVC)
4.6.3. Social Network (SN)
4.7. Conclusion
General Conclusion and Perspectives
References .


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