Medical supplies have been the center of attention during the coronavirus pandemic. When cases started to increase around the world, experts started to warn governments about the potential shortage of medical supplies healthcare centers were going to experience, along with the collapse of this system. This is bound to happen with pandemics, and the United States certainly felt the consequences.
Without a doubt, the most valuable item among the supplies was N95 masks. These are respirators considered to be extremely effective for virus protection, and healthcare workers and first responders need them right now. Anyone who uses this face mask has the biggest protection you can get from a face mask right now, so people who are in high-risk situations need these masks to keep working.
In this article, we’ll discuss the importance of N95 masks, and some places you can use to purchase N95 masks for your non-profit organization.
N95 masks: why are they important?
N95 masks have been the most sought after product since before the COVID-19 became a pandemic. Do you know what the term N95 means? It comes from a classification of respirators established by an institution in the USA. Every country or continent has a rating system and classification for respirators, and the American system is based on the NIOSH classification.
NIOSH stands for National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. This institution is in charge of making efforts to prevent work-related injuries or illnesses. To achieve this, they take on the task to test and regulate respirators to make sure they meet their standards.
This classification is based primarily on the mask’s resistance to oil and its minimum particulate filtration efficacy. In the case of N95 respirators, the N indicates that the respirator is not resistant to oil and that it can filter out at least 95% of all airborne particles in the air.
This makes N95 masks the best option for protection against non-oil based particles, such as dust or smoke. These particles are considered to be respiratory hazards, and are present in various work environments, like mining, construction, and firefighters. Viruses are also non-oil based particles, so N95 masks can offer protection against the flu or COVID-19 as well.
All N95 masks need to have the approval seal by NIOSH, otherwise they haven’t been properly regulated, and can’t be called an N95 respirator. If the mask is intended for medical use, it needs additional approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, many N95 mask models without FDA approval have been cleared for medical use under their Emergency Use Authorization, as the COVID-19 pandemic led to a healthcare crisis.
Shortages of N95 masks: one of the biggest problems right now
Since the pandemic began, one of the biggest threads besides the virus itself was the imminent shortage of all medical supplies and PPE (personal protective equipment). Surgical masks and gowns, gloves, face shields, KN95 masks, and of course, the valuable N95 masks, were among the most important items for protection and were doomed to become scarce.
Predictions became true very quickly, and shortages were being reported in many states around the United States. Doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers have been trying to make the most out of the PPE they’re receiving, treating dozens of COVID-19 patients every day.
But, these shortages are not affecting healthcare workers only. First responders and essential workers also need virus protection, since they are at high risk of infection daily. People in work fields with respiratory hazards, who also need N95 masks but are not exposed to the virus, are having to use other types of respiratory PPE since N95 masks are being prioritized to healthcare workers and first responders.
Where to purchase N95 masks for your NGO
If you’re going to purchase N95 masks or any type of PPE for your NGO, we suggest you always look for reputable and trustworthy sources. As we know, N95 masks are highly valuable right now, and that has led to people scamming buyers online. Counterfeit products and price gouging are also very serious problems, especially in online buying. Here are three places you can trust with your N95 masks:
Clinical Supplies USA
Clinical Supplies USA has been committed to providing safety and security to all American citizens. They provide same-day shipping, done from California, specifically San Diego. They’ve been published on websites like Rolling Stones, as one of the best sources for PPE. Additionally, they have donated over $150,000 in PPE to local communities to help during the pandemic. They have a wide range of brands and models, including the popular 3M N95 masks like 3M 8210 and 3M 8511.
N95 Mask Co
Respokare® is a NIOSH-approved N95 respirator, and N95 Mask Co is their certified distributor. With over 19 years of experience in selling PPE, they finally developed these N95 masks that have antiviral properties, inactivating up to 99.9% of the bioaerosols it filters. Anyone who uses these masks can be sure they’re pathogen-free.
Honest PPE Supply
As the name suggests, this company is focused on solving some of the major problems to come from the pandemic: shortages in PPE, selling of counterfeit products, and price gouging. A family business that brings PPE products from overseas at low minimum order quantities and competitive prices, priding themselves on their transparency and honesty.
These are some of the best options with PPE for sale where you can buy in bulk or wholesale. You can find all sorts of medical PPE as well, including all types of disposable face masks or reusable cloth masks. You can even find these in a smaller size for kids.