The Future of Travel: Viruses Bumped from Hotel Rooms­; Serta Simmons Bedding Now in Charge

 

This blog post was sponsored by Serta Simmons Bedding.

Serta Simmons Bedding, one of the leading mattress manufacturers in North America, is partnering with the Swiss textile innovation company, HeiQ, to create the first government approved antiviral mattress: the HeiQ Viroblock. If your hotel bed mattress was 99.99% effective against the SARS-CoV-2 virus, would you sleep more soundly? I would. That’s why I am so happy! Needless to say, hotels and the hospitality industry in general are very interested in HeiQ Viroblock to make their guests’ visits as comfortable as possible.

Travel is on pause for most of us.  Armchair travel is great, but I wonder if it soothes wanderlust or fuels it. My feet really have been itchy lately. Thank you, COVID-19 and resulting pandemic. I must admit, the self-isolation has been perfect for prioritizing my destination bucket list and given me a chance to strategize logistics.

Not only has COVID provided plenty of time to dream of faraway lands, it has afforded the opportunity to think about why I travel and my must-haves. An authentic experience with locals is a must as well as being environmentally conscientious. Safety is paramount, and I put my health in that category. I’m wondering, do you feel comfortable traveling this summer or anytime soon?

Are you looking to travel more safely in the future?

If your hotel bed mattress was 99.99% effective against the SARS-CoV-2 virus, would you sleep more soundly? I would! That’s why I was so happy to hear that Serta Simmons Bedding, one of the leading mattress manufacturers in North America, is partnering with the Swiss textile innovation company, HeiQ, to create the first government approved antiviral mattress. Needless to say, hotels and the hospitality industry in general are very interested in making their guests’ visits as comfortable as possible.

HeiQ Viroblock Quickie Facts

With a target release of this fall, the antiviral mattress will use HeiQ Viroblock™ technology. The technology has been approved by the Swiss Medical Device Directive for antiviral use in medical personal protective equipment such as N95 equivalent masks. A third-party Australian research institute showed textile material treated with HeiQ’s Viroblock technology to be 99.99% effective against the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Simmons Serta Bedding is seeking similar approvals from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Food and Drug Administration.

This technology was first developed in 2014 by Swiss virologist Dr. Thierry Pelet, working with the Swiss company HeiQ, but it was not marketed extensively at the time and was ultimately shelved until 2019.

HeiQ Viroblock is manufactured out of components that are hypoallergenic, non-sensitizing, non-irritant, and skin patch tested. Key components are from recycled and bio-based sources.

Any Questions on Blocking Viruses?

You may have some of the same questions I did when I first heard of these antiviral mattresses. Following are answers to some of the most common questions about this amazing technology.

How did HeiQ Viroblock come to be?

HeiQ Viroblock originally was developed to treat facemasks and registered by Swiss Medic as a medical device. The technology has been enhanced and optimized to suit applications on other fabric types.

How does it work?

HeiQ Viroblock uses a microsilver-vesicle technology designed for antiviral and antibacterial (together antimicrobial) effect. Oppositely charged viruses are attracted and bound permanently to their sulfur groups, and fatty spherical vesicle technology (Liposomes) is used as a booster helping to deplete the viral envelope of its cholesterol content, thereby deactivating the virus and resisting the bacteria.

Could you explain that in everyday terms?

Viroblock is designed to work like a magnet for virus particles that attracts them, binds them, and breaks them down until the virus is deactivated.

What is the story of the Serta Simmons Bedding-HeiQ partnership?

SSB and Swiss HeiQ have been longtime collaborators, for example its cooling HeiQ Smart Temp (Cool Touch) technology range. In response to the pandemic, the two companies joined forces to find solutions to unmet needs in the mattress environment.

How do viruses spread on mattresses when they are usually covered with sheets?

Virus particles and bacteria are invisible to the human eye (SARS-CoV-2 is only 90 nanometers large) so that they easily pass through sheets. They can persist and stay infectious for days on textiles, such as traditional mattresses.

Can’t you just get a virus-blocking mattress cover rather than a new mattress?

Mattress covers on the market partially will retard a virus from reaching the mattress, but they don’t deactivate the virus, which just sits on top of the cover. If the virus passes through the cover it sits on the mattress. Due to the microscopic size of a virus, it can resuspend and return to the top, for example on top of a freshly changed mattress cover.

How is HeiQ Viroblock applied to mattresses?

HeiQ Viroblock is applied during the mattress fabric manufacturing process. The technology is applied during a “textile finish application process” throughout the entire fabric, then oven dried to properly cure and maintain long term performance.

Impressive? Yes! But Wait, There’s More

What else Viroblock can do is probably best summed up in what it won’t do. Here you go — Viroblock won’t:

  • Impact the function of the mattress in any way.
  • Change the feel of the cover of a mattress.
  • Produce or have any kind of odor.
  • Reduce the availability of other urgently needed medical supplies and Personal Protective Equipment.
  • Downgrade the efficacy and durability by spot cleaning the mattress.
  • Present recycling or reclamation issues.

Your next hotel room may well be healthier traveling with this new anti-viral mattress

In response to COVID-19, most businesses have upped their safety and cleanliness standards. Far more frequent cleanings of restaurants and mandated mask-wearing while shopping are two examples. Perhaps, the travel industry may create their new normal faster than other industries because Serta Simmons Bedding is committed to helping people sleep easier. Plus, not only does Viroblock add another layer of protection for travelers, not to mention hospital patients, Serta Simmons Bedding has donated more than 10,000 mattresses to the medical community through its partnership with Relief Bed.

Will the Viroblock Serta Simmons Bedding mattresses help you (or me) sleep better? This germophobe is guessing “yes!” and looking forward to reporting back to you.

I’ll keep you posted on the travels of Viroblock through the EPA regulation channels. How about if you share your destination bucket list and the hotel you most want to have Viroblock? Let’s try and soothe our wanderlust together until we can meet again, minus masks.

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