Your safety is essential in order to deliver care to your patients. Even in a time of constrained resources, you show up for them. You care for them. You protect them. As we navigate through this time of change together, we share a common goal: Making respiratory protection the highest priority.
You rely on us for respiratory protection. We continue to increase production to meet ongoing demand as you continue care and as elective procedures return. It’s all part of our shared mission to transform outcomes, which starts with helping protect you, so you can protect those in your care.
With supply challenges around the world, many facilities are looking to optimize their equipment. Read more information on use and reuse of N95 respirators.
We know you have questions related to PPE. We are here to provide guidance on the different types of PPE, understanding proper use and protecting your skin from extended PPE use.
From disposable and reusable respirators to powered air-purifying respirators, explore the range of respiratory protection options that are available for use in healthcare environments.
Fit testing is a critical part of your respiratory protection program. Click below to learn more about fit testing and resources available to help ensure your team’s safety.
Respiratory Protection Featured Information
We are fully committed to helping fight the spread of COVID-19 by supporting healthcare works around the world. This pandemic is affecting all of us, and we are doing everything we can to support public health–including doubling our global output of N95 respirators and getting them to healthcare providers on the front lines of the pandemic.
Join our experts to take a deeper dive into respiratory protection topics to help reduce risks in the fight against COVID-19.
Part 1: Respiratory protection options and proper technique for donning and doffing
Part 2: Fraudulent activity, imported respirators, decontamination methods and skin protection
Part 3: A closer look at FEMA – Imported respirators from Asia
Part 4: Respirator implementation considerations
3M is continuing to address the COVID-19 pandemic with many tactics to help protect those responding to the outbreak, including healthcare workers and first responders. In early April, 3M reached an agreement with the U.S. government on a plan that, with the Trump Administration’s assistance, will enable FEMA to import 166.5 million respirators into the United States from our plants in Asia.
Standard and surgical N95 respirators are both designed to help reduce the wearer’s exposure to airborne particulate hazards. In addition, surgical N95 respirators are FDA cleared as a medical device and can be used as a fluid barrier to splashes and sprays. Standard and surgical N95 respirators are both NIOSH-approved.
N95 Respirators are designed to help reduce the wearer’s exposure to airborne particles.
3M does not recommend reuse of disposable masks or respirators when utilized in environments where SARS-CoV-2 could be present. Particles containing viruses, bacteria, etc. get captured on the N95 respirator filter fibers during use and remain on the fibers after use. Handling or storing the mask or respirator might result in further spread of the biological particles.
CDC guidelines provide strategies for optimizing the supply of respirators, including reuse: When supplies of N95 respirators are depleted, a combination of approaches can be utilized to conserve supplies while safeguarding health care workers (see full CDC document here).
There is no way of determining the maximum possible number of safe reuses for an N95 respirator. Safe N95 reuse is affected by several variables that impact respirator function and contamination over time. The decision to implement policies that permit extended use or limited reuse of N95 respirators should be made by the professionals who manage the institution’s respiratory protection program.
An elastomeric respirator is a reusable piece of personal protective equipment with exchangeable filters. When properly selected and worn, reusable respirators effectively filter airborne particulate hazards. They are designed to fit tightly to the face and can be cleaned and reused.
PAPRs are a type of respirator that use a blower to force the ambient air through air-purifying elements. When properly selected and worn, PAPRs effectively filter airborne particulate hazards. They are designed to fit over some facial hair and they are available in a variety of styles and facepiece/headtop offerings.
It is the responsibility of the healthcare organization to determine acceptability of any respirator to help protect their personnel and ensure compliance with the respiratory protection program requirements of the U.S. Federal and/or State OSHA. The healthcare organization must also determine which tasks are considered “surgical procedures,” and if respiratory protection is required for these surgical procedures, they would need to use FDA-cleared surgical N95 respirators for those tasks and a parenthetical (or other configurations approved for emergency use).
As your facility continues to return to work and open accessibility to procedures, 3M is dedicated to providing you with the information needed to help keep people protected at every touchpoint.