Updated: N95 FAQs
Asante has expanded the availability of N95 respirators to allow for their use in place of medical-grade face masks when appropriate.
Where do I get an N95 mask?
If your department or unit already receives a regular supply of N95 masks, nothing changes. You will continue to get your normal supply. Non-patient care departments such as Guest Services, Facilities, ITS, Nutrition Services and Security may order N95s through Materials Management by your supervisor, manager or director. Call (541) 789-4541.
Medical-grade face masks will continue to be made available throughout all Asante facilities. Visitors are not required to wear N95 masks.
Do I have to wear an N95?
Level I and Level II
- Yes, in settings where a fitted N95 is part of your required PPE (e.g., when caring for patients under special precautions, airborne precautions, during procedures likely to generate aerosols when COVID-19 test results are unknown, when patients are suspected positive or their status is unknown).
- No, wearing a non-fitted N95 (Hope 220) is voluntary and may be worn in place of a tight-fitting medical-grade mask; however, these non-fitted masks are strongly encouraged for staff whose job duties require them to be in close or prolonged contact with each other, patients or visitors.
- Treat the non-fitted N95 mask as you would a medical-grade mask: Don’t place it on a contaminated surface and discard if soiled.
Do I need to be fit-tested to wear an N95? What about medical approval?
Level I and Level II
- Yes. Health care workers who are required to wear an N-95 respirator (3M1870) as part of their required PPE to provide patient care must be fit-tested yearly and undergo medical approval before use.
- Fit-testing is not required for the voluntary use of a non-fitted N95 (Hope 220) and medical approval is not required for voluntary use of non-fitted masks.
- If you would like to be fit-tested for an N95 mask (3M1870), contact Asante Employee Health.
How do I use an N95?
N95 respirators contain high-efficiency particulate filters and the mask fits snugly on the face, so that even an unfitted N95 provides a much higher level of source control than a regular face mask. Health care workers should perform a user seal check after putting on a respirator to ensure a good fit. As with any mask or respirator, the level of protection they offer is dependent on their proper and consistent use.
How to perform a user seal check?
Download the CDC Respiratory Protection FAQs on the COVID-19 intranet hub.
If you need answers for a personal work matter, please contact the author or department directly instead of leaving a comment.