There are, at least, four key aspects that must be taken into consideration when sterilizing or disinfecting filtering facepiece respirators:
· Effectiveness against the target organism (e.g.: COVID 19)
· Safety fort he person wearing it (e.g.: no off-gassing of chemicals into the breathing zone)
· The disinfection cannot affect the respirator’s fit
· Not damage the respirator’s filtration
If the filtration is damaged or the respirator does not fit, it will not help reduce exposure to airborne particles at the level indicated by the supplier (e.g.: FFP2, FFP3, etc).
By the time being, no disinfection method has met all four criteria. Thus, none of them is currently acceptable.
Based on currently available data, it is not recommendable to attempt to sanitize, disinfect or sterilize filtering facepieces.
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