What Health Canada Has To Say About PPE
All You Need To Know About PPE According To Health Canada
PPE, better known as Personal Protective Equipment are items which have been made available to provide a barrier to help prevent potential exposure to infectious diseases or viruses such as COVID-19. These items include gloves, gowns, masks and respirators, face shields and googles. In response to the novel COVID-19 virus, there has been an increase and urgent demand for PPE. Below, we will be detailing the recommendations provided by Health Canada on each protective equipment.
Wearing a mask which covers both the nose and mouth is recommended for situations when one cannot physically maintain a 2-metre distance from others, especially in crowded public locations. This could be the case in malls, grocery stores or public transportation stations.
Surgical and procedure masks are examples of masks to use while N95 respirators are reserved for healthcare providers directly interacting with or taking care of COVID-19 patients. This is highly effective in reducing the spread of the virus.
Serving as a barrier against respiratory droplets, long sleeved medical gowns are an indispensable item for health care workers. They avert pathogens from penetrating the material both protecting the patient and the person wearing it.
The two different gowns, isolation and surgical, both having different uses. Isolation gowns are used to protect the clothes being worn by the individual as well as protect patients and visitors by preventing the transfer of microorganisms and body fluids while surgical gowns are sterile textile and used when working in a sterile environment.
Medical gloves ranges from sterile to non- sterile, and gloves made of latex, vinyl, synthetic polymer or nitrile. Their main role is to protect both the patient and wearer, providing droplet and contact precautions. They are recommending for direct contact with an ill person or a contaminated object and environment.
They are classified as Class II medical devices. This means they meet design, testing and manufacturing standards set by Health Canada. The use of non –medical gloves could pose a health risk if used for medical procedures.
Overall, the type of PPE recommended is based on the workplace and services provided in addition to if it is possible to maintain a two-meter distancing. Nonetheless, they all have the ability to protect whoever is wearing it and the people they might be interacting with.