Document Type : Original Article
Department of Medical Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, Gonabad University of Medical Sciences, Gonabad, Iran
Environmental Health Engineer, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences Tehran, Iran
Department of Environmental Health Engineering, School of Public Health, Infectious Diseases Research Center, Social Determinants of Health Research Center, Gonabad University of Medical Sciences, Gonabad, Iran
BSc of Environmental Health Engineering, Gonabad University of Medical Sciences, Gonabad, Iran
Department of Theology, Faculty of Medicine, Gonabad University of Medical Sciences, Gonabad, Iran
Background: Mosques are known as a gathering place and a center of worship for Muslims. The present study aimed to investigate the environmental health status and fungal and bacterial contamination of mosques in Gonabad, Iran. Methods: This analytic-cross sectional study assessed the environmental health status of mosques using the relevant regulations. The sterile carpet sampling method and the sterile swap were used to take the samples of the surfaces. Standard methods were used to determine fungal and bacterial contamination. Overall, 67 samples were taken from the surfaces of doors, windows, and carpets. Data were analyzed at a significance level of 0.05. Results: Data analysis indicated that the environmental health status of mosques was acceptable. None of the dermatophyte fungal colonies grew on the plates which contained Sabouraud agar with cycloheximide and chloramphenicol (SCC) during incubation of primary culture media. Aspergillus niger was detected in all mosques and on all surfaces. Frequency and percentage of Aspergillus niger were 18 (48.67%) and 6 (16.23) for Mucor. In the case of bacterial contamination, Coagulasenegative staphylococci with the highest percentage (38.46%) and Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella, and Escherichia coli, each with 3.84%, were the lowest types of detected bacteria, respectively. The most fungal and bacterial contamination was detected in the carpets. Conclusion: According to the results, it is essential to pay attention to the environmental health of the mosques and personal hygiene that requires the implementation of new programs and rules to increase the health awareness of worshipers and mosque servants to prevent the spread of fungal and bacterial infections.
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