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        Tips and Guidelines for Buying an Air-Purifying Respirator

        Devices that filter environmental air for the protection of the wearer. Airborne particles and/or various gases are filtered to prevent wearer from contamination. Self contained devices include air source, or devices that can be connected to an external source of compressed air.

        Tips for Buying an Air-Purifying Respirator

        1. Medical facilities should select a respirator that is comfortable and provides adequate protection for the duration of its use. The selected type must be compatible with any eye and face protection, corrective lenses, hearing protection, and protective head cover.
        2. Medical facilities should consider the following factors when selecting respirators: the types of contaminants and their concentrations and relative toxicity, as well as compliance with applicable regulations; the physical circumstances of the user; the environmental conditions; the length of time protection is required, and the kinds of activity that need to be carried out while the device is being worn. Other important factors to be considered include: product availability, ease-of-use, reliability, and the service and technical assistance history of the manufacturer. When using the respirator, users should have a wide field of vision and the ability to communicate freely with others without having to remove the device.
        3. Medical facilities are encouraged to select respirators that allow the use of cartridges, canisters, and filters from more than one manufacturer. These accessories have a significant replacement cost over the lifetime of a respirator.
        4. Some facepieces can be used in both air purifying and air supplying devices. This is beneficial for facilities that require the use of both types of respirator.
        5. Medical facilities should use the HR to determine the minimum APF needed. APF must be greater than or equal to the calculated HR.
        6. A full-face elastomeric negative-pressure or chemical-resistant is recommended if a chemical can be absorbed through the skin and eyes.
        7. Facilities should select a lightweight respirator with little or no breathing resistance, such as a PAPR, for conditions including strenuous work, long periods of use, or high heat and humidity When a PAPR is required, it is recommended to test the flow rate of the unit using the protocol supplied by the manufacturer. A tight-fitting unit should provide a flow rate of 4 cfm, while a loose-fitting face piece, helmet, or hood should have airflow of at least 6 cfm.
        8. In oxygen-deficient and/or IDLH atmospheres, or when the contaminant and/or concentration are unknown, it is recommended to use an atmosphere-supplying respirator. Facilities purchasing such a respirator should verify an airflow rate of 4-15 cfm for a tight fitting facepiece, while a loose-fitting facepiece, helmet, or hood should maintain an airflow rate of 6-15 cfm. During use of an atmosphere-supplying respirator, users should ensure that the length and position of the air-line do not affect mobility or pose a tripping hazard.
        9. Buying a replacement part - such as a gas cylinder, a battery, a facepiece, or a visor - may be significantly cheaper than replacing the entire respirator. Facilities should look for manufacturers who provide fit testing or any other support with the purchase of a respirator.

        Questions for the Seller

        Before you purchase your Air-Purifying Respirator, we recommend you ask the seller the following questions:

        • Air-Purifying APF Half-face?
        • Full-face?

        Atmosphere Supplying

        • Air line?
        • Pressure demand?
        • Does it include an air source?
        • Escape bottle?
        • Does it include a compressor?

        Tips and Guidelines for Buying an Air-Purifying Respirator

        Devices that filter environmental air for the protection of the wearer. Airborne particles and/or various gases are filtered to prevent wearer from contamination. Self contained devices include air source, or devices that can be connected to an external source of compressed air.

        Tips for Buying an Air-Purifying Respirator

        1. Medical facilities should select a respirator that is comfortable and provides adequate protection for the duration of its use. The selected type must be compatible with any eye and face protection, corrective lenses, hearing protection, and protective head cover.
        2. Medical facilities should consider the following factors when selecting respirators: the types of contaminants and their concentrations and relative toxicity, as well as compliance with applicable regulations; the physical circumstances of the user; the environmental conditions; the length of time protection is required, and the kinds of activity that need to be carried out while the device is being worn. Other important factors to be considered include: product availability, ease-of-use, reliability, and the service and technical assistance history of the manufacturer. When using the respirator, users should have a wide field of vision and the ability to communicate freely with others without having to remove the device.
        3. Medical facilities are encouraged to select respirators that allow the use of cartridges, canisters, and filters from more than one manufacturer. These accessories have a significant replacement cost over the lifetime of a respirator.
        4. Some facepieces can be used in both air purifying and air supplying devices. This is beneficial for facilities that require the use of both types of respirator.
        5. Medical facilities should use the HR to determine the minimum APF needed. APF must be greater than or equal to the calculated HR.
        6. A full-face elastomeric negative-pressure or chemical-resistant is recommended if a chemical can be absorbed through the skin and eyes.
        7. Facilities should select a lightweight respirator with little or no breathing resistance, such as a PAPR, for conditions including strenuous work, long periods of use, or high heat and humidity When a PAPR is required, it is recommended to test the flow rate of the unit using the protocol supplied by the manufacturer. A tight-fitting unit should provide a flow rate of 4 cfm, while a loose-fitting face piece, helmet, or hood should have airflow of at least 6 cfm.
        8. In oxygen-deficient and/or IDLH atmospheres, or when the contaminant and/or concentration are unknown, it is recommended to use an atmosphere-supplying respirator. Facilities purchasing such a respirator should verify an airflow rate of 4-15 cfm for a tight fitting facepiece, while a loose-fitting facepiece, helmet, or hood should maintain an airflow rate of 6-15 cfm. During use of an atmosphere-supplying respirator, users should ensure that the length and position of the air-line do not affect mobility or pose a tripping hazard.
        9. Buying a replacement part - such as a gas cylinder, a battery, a facepiece, or a visor - may be significantly cheaper than replacing the entire respirator. Facilities should look for manufacturers who provide fit testing or any other support with the purchase of a respirator.

        Questions for the Seller

        Before you purchase your Air-Purifying Respirator, we recommend you ask the seller the following questions:

        • Air-Purifying APF Half-face?
        • Full-face?

        Atmosphere Supplying

        • Air line?
        • Pressure demand?
        • Does it include an air source?
        • Escape bottle?
        • Does it include a compressor?
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