Respiratory safety aims to protect medical professionals from polluted air, to prevent occupational disease, by toxic dust, fogs, mists, vapors, gases, fumes, smokes, or sprays.

Wearing respiratory safety can be a little difficult, but it is dangerous to avoid this at this time. This is because both long and short-term health issues can result from airborne particles and pollutants, no matter how small. Airborne hazards can cause cancer, lung impairment, other illnesses, and even death if unchecked.

N95 Respirators

N95 masks are allowed since there is a U.S. requirement requiring masks to be able to filter out at least 95% of very tiny particles, like coronavirus-containing droplets. They are typically used by medical personnel and factory workers who deal with chemicals and metals.

On the contrary, surgical masks and cloth masks are designed to avoid transmission of the germs from the wearer to the others and are easier to wear. Surgical masks are not designed to have strong seals like N95 masks on the face.

Advantages of N95 Respirators 

Best Protection

In pandemic awareness research, the N95 Surgical Mask is regularly tested and it has been found that this surgical mask offers adequate protection against many airborne particles, viruses, including diseases such as SARS and Flu. It also complies with CDC guidelines for the management of tuberculosis exposure and ranks 160 mmHg as a "high barrier" class in compliance with ASTM F1862 fluid penetration and splash resistance specifications.

It ensures:

  • >99.9% Bacterial Filtration Efficiency
  • >99.9% Viral Filtration Efficiency
  • >99.5% Particle Filtration Efficiency

Moreover, the Surgical N95 Respirator reaches the NIOSH breathability efficiency requirements, which is remarkable. The N95 also decreases the movement of microorganisms while reducing airborne particulate wearer exposure of fewer than 0.1 microns, making this respirator suitable for laser and electrocautery processes.

Convenient and Hygienic 

The flat-folding masks are sold in 20-unit cases. For hygiene purposes, each mask is individually bagged and they are ideally sized to fit into a pocket before the need arises. Besides, the molded masks are packed in a box of 20 units, in a single plastic sleeve to avoid exposure and contamination when opening the box. The plastic sleeve, for fast opening and dispensing, has a tearaway section.

Varieties It Has

Flat folding:

  • Light and thin design with soft inner layers for more comfort.
  • Inside the outer layers, elastic head braces are sonically welded to eliminate pressure points.
  • Universal, one style respirator to match almost every shape/style face
  • Incredibly lightweight, 33 percent lighter to minimize wearer fatigue than other comparable respirators, which allows for a more convenient, longer wearing period.

Molded:

  • A lightweight yet rigid outer shell to avoid the collapse of the mask, plus a soft inner layer for protection yet convenience.
  • Supremely lightweight, 33 percent lighter to minimize wearer fatigue than equivalent respirators, resulting in a longer, more convenient wearing time.
  • To reduce pressure points, mask contours with the natural shape of the face decrease the need to fiddle with a metal nose clip.

Safe and Easy

The N95 Surgical Respirator is free of latex, PVC, and silicone, making this a viable choice for individuals who are responsive to these products. These respirators are disposable, ensuring that before use, there is no fuss over disinfecting them.

Identifying the Genuinity and quality of the Mask

You can find licensed N95 masks on NIOSH’s website. On their filter content, such masks should have "NIOSH" and "N95" printed. Genuine N95 masks also have elastics, instead of earloops, that stretch behind the head.

Generally, hospital staff needs to undergo a 20-minute test before starting to use a new type of mask. To see if their mask fits properly, staff may search for something shorter. NIOSH presented pictures of fake masks on their web page.

For the Healthcare Workers - Needed or Not

The results of a study showed that surgical masks did not protect from respiratory disease or influenza. Nevertheless, N95 masks had a statistically significant efficacy of 60% against clinical respiratory disease, 56% against laboratory-reported viral respiratory infection, 75% against influenza, and 75% against reported influenza.

Staff was forced to wear a fitted N95 mask, without checking the fit and the type of mask - a surgical mask, or face mask according to a study with 1936 medical workers who worked full time in this pandemic in 24 hospitals in Beijing, China. During winter, the employees were tracked for 4 weeks when wearing the masks, and for 1 week afterward while wearing no mask. Medical symptoms were routinely examined and workers were screened for infectious disease.

The features of the hospital staff were typically similar at baseline, although they differed in whether or not they had received influenza vaccine protection and in hand-washing procedures. 

The Shortage 

An issue with PPE is that supplies are still not spread fairly throughout the country and even within hot spots. There are more supplies in better-resourced hospitals, while other facilities fail to find enough.

Along with the hospitals, more health care institutes are in dire need of PPE kit. A fifth of which estimated that they had less than a week of vital PPE availability at the end of May. Chan states that other main employees need PPE to defend themselves and others, including grocery store clerks, delivery staff, and others who don't have the privilege of working from home.

Since a large portion of the masks, gowns, and gloves the US uses come from China, and supply chains have been disrupted due to overnight global demand.

The problem is in better shape now because of the restrictions and steps taken by the sellers and giant retailers. Hopefully, it will be mitigated soon.

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