In times of high respiratory protections demand, reusable personal protective equipment (PPE) represents an important opportunity for long term cost-effective preservation of critical life-saving equipment.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have authorized EHMRs (Elastomeric Half-Mask Respirators) that have been approved by National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) in accordance to 42 CFR part 84 to be used in healthcare environments.
Elastomeric Half-Mask Respirators (EHMRs):
An EHMR is a respirator with a tight-fitting facepiece made of synthetic or natural rubber materials which can be used both for routine healthcare and to prevent wearer exposure to SARS-CoV-2.
EHMR offers several benefits:
- Protection: With the same level of protection of N95 filtering facepiece respirators (FFRs), EHMRs achieve a higher fit factor because of their sealing surfaces and adjustable straps.
- Reuse and cost-effectiveness: The elastomeric facepiece of EHMR is designed to be cleaned, disinfected, and reused. Therefore, EHMR boasts a great cost-efficiency advantage, particularly over the long-term.
- Lower demand for N95 FFRs during shortages: Some healthcare facilities may choose to use EHMRs to address potential supply shortages of N95 FFRs.