The Ebola outbreak in Africa and reports of healthcare workers who contracted the disease, then brought it into America, were big stories last year. Beyond the headlines, Robert Baker, Managing Director of BBJ Consulting Service, says the reports forced many healthcare facilities to re-evaluate their infection control practices and support systems – including their HVAC systems. It just so happened that the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) already had begun implementing a multi-stage study to research what role HVAC systems might play in the transmission of disease. Results from the first phase of the project are due to be released later this year; however, early indicators of the findings will show that very little currently is known about the impact HVAC systems and air movement have on the spread of disease. If that’s the case, more research will definitely be in order. Debates and discussions about the role airflow systems might play in the spread of airborne diseases are just the latest indicators of how the HVAC environment is changing. Questions never previously asked now are demanding answers, answers the next generation of professionals must be prepared to provide.