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.
Our shared mission to transform outcomes starts with helping to protect you, so you can protect those in your care. To that end, we offer a range of respiratory protection options for healthcare professionals.
Surgical masks are loose fitting masks which are designed to protect a patient or an aseptic environment from particles expelled from the wearer, in addition they can be used as a fluid barrier. A surgical respirator has a tight fit and it can do exactly what we described for surgical masks (eg. protecting a patient and/or an aseptic environment) in addition to all that, a surgical respirator will also protect the wearer against potential respiratory hazards.
Surgical respirators are tight fitting and designed to protect both the wearer and the patient or aseptic environment; surgical respirators are dual certified EN14683 & EN149.
A Type I mask is allowed to have a lower bacterial filtration efficiency (outward leakage) than a Type II mask.
The required minimum bacterial efficiency for a Type I mask is 95%, for a Type II mask that minimum is set at 98%.
In EN14683 it is also mentioned that Type I masks should only be used for patients and other persons to reduce the risk of spread of infections particularly in epidemic or pandemic situations.
This means that Type I masks are not intended for use by healthcare professionals in an operating room or in other medical settings with similar requirements.
All filtering facepiece respiratory protective equipment (medical as well as non-medical) need to be CE certified in accordance with the PPE regulation EU 2016/425, (the EN149 test standard), surgical masks are CE certified in accordance with the Medical Device Regulation EU) 2017/745 (the EN 14683 standard). Medical respirators are dual certified, meaning that they comply to both standards. Non-medical respirators might be worn to protect the healthcare worker, but they cannot be worn with the intention to protect a patient of an (aseptic) environment at the same time.
An reusable respirator is a reusable piece of personal protective equipment with exchangeable filters.
The filters, when exposed to a bioaerosol, are normally single use – but when used against industrial contaminants they may be re-usable. However, the masks are designed to fit tightly to face and are able to be cleaned and reused.
When properly selected and worn, reusable respirators (mask with filters) effectively filter airborne particulate hazards.
3M™ Powered Air Respirators are battery-operated, reusable respirator systems that can cover the full face and neck additionally in cases where it is difficult or impossible to achieve propper facial fit. They’re typically worn in clinical or airborne isolation areas and provide respiratory protection from potentially infectious airborne particulates.
Surgical masks as well as respirators should be changed in between patients, if they are visibly soiled or wet and if they are damaged.
A homemade mask may help wearers remember not to touch their nose and mouth, and it may help contain spit or phlegm expelled by the wearer, similar to covering a cough or sneeze with a face tissue.
However, homemade masks do not serve as respiratory protection and may not provide any measurable exposure reduction. They are not designed to reduce wearer’s exposure to airborne particulates, like government-approved respirators are.
N95, FFP2, FFP3 and similar respirators are designed to form a seal with the face. When a good seal is formed almost all of the air goes through the filter media. The filter media in filtering facepiece respirators uses non-woven fibrous filter media to capture particles. These fibres crisscross to form a web of many layers. Particles are trapped, or captured, by several different mechanisms as the airstream flows through the layers of filter media. Very large particles in the airstream will settle out due to gravity, other particles may impact a fibre and be captured, and very small particles are captured by diffusion.
In Europe, filtering facepiece respirators are tested against EN 149:2001+A1:2009 and certified to the Personal Protective Equipment Regulation (EU) 2016/425. EN 149 includes many physical and performance factors including filtration efficiency, breathing resistance and total inward leakage. Tested and approved EN 149 tested respirators have a filtration efficiency of at least 94% for FFP2 and 99% for FFP3.
Tips to help avoid counterfeit products include:
3M recommends purchasing our products only from a 3M authorized distributor or dealer, as that will increase the likelihood that you will receive authentic 3M products.
If you are in doubt, please contact your 3M representative.
3M™ Health Care respirators and surgical masks do different jobs, depending on the situation and the respiratory protection you need. Be sure to take care of yourself and those around you by selecting the proper respiratory PPE. This guide is an overview to help you identify the hazard and assess the risk in your ICU environment (PDF, 154KB).
At the end of this 30 minute course, you will be able to:
Click the registration link below to access the webinar on demand
Doff for storage and reuse:
Extended use of PPE, particularly devices like respirators and face shields, may impact skin and cause various levels of skin breakdown. Explore some simple ways you can help minimise skin breakdown when delivery care.
3M Health Care respirators and surgical masks do different jobs, depending on the situation and the respiratory protection you need. Be sure to take care of yourself and those around you by selecting the proper respiratory PPE. This guide is an overview to help you identify the hazard and assess the risk in your ICU environment." - please see "selection guide (PDF, 11.1MB)" from brochure page number 9.
Certain 3M skin health products may help protect the skin and not interfere with the fit of the respirator including:
Learn more about skin protectant considerations and how to use Cavilon solutions for skin protection under your PPE.
At the end of this 30 minute course, you will:
Click the registration link below to access the webinar on demand
3M does not recommend the use of petroleum jelly (also known as petrolatum), ointments, or thick creams because of the potential for interference with the seal of any of 3M’s respirators. Petroleum jelly may cause the respirator to slip around on the face.
Yes, Cavilon No Sting Barrier Film will help protect intact skin from moisture and friction and, when used properly, would not be expected to interfere with the fit1 of 3M respirators.
3M™ Cavilon™ Advanced Skin Protectant* can be used to help protect damaged skin, e.g. abrasions from friction or other superficial skin damage
The 0.7 ml** is preferred. If the 2.7 ml** applicator is used, the following steps are recommended to minimise fluid dripping or pooling during application:
Once completely dry on the skin, Cavilon No Sting Barrier Film or Cavilon Advanced Skin Protectant is not expected to transfer off the skin onto respirators. However, 3M has not tested respirators for the presence of residual barrier film or skin protectant, or the impact that this material could have on decontamination processes.
3M does not recommend use of dressings such as polyurethane foams and hydrocolloids. These types of dressings can raise the respirator off the cheeks and nose and may interfere with the intended seal and exposure reduction associated with the respirator.
Note: Dressings or film barriers can be used to help prevent or cover areas of skin damage under equipment, such as face shields, where fit and seal is not critical to the function of the protective equipment.