Questions regarding the rapid test for respiratory protective equipment for use during pandemics: IFA publishes FAQs

27.03.2020

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The suitability of respiratory masks for protection against Sars-CoV-2 can now be checked via a quick test Copyright: Tobias Seeliger - stock.adobe.com

Facility now exists for respiratory masks to undergo a rapid test to determine their suitability for protection against Sars-CoV-2. The purpose of this test is to provide a swift response to the acute shortage of products with European approval providing respiratory protection during pandemics, and thereby to protect medical and nursing professionals for the duration of the health threat posed by the Corona pandemic. The Institute for Occupational Safety and Health of the German Social Accident Insurance (IFA) has created a new web page providing answers to important questions from manufacturers and importers concerning this new rapid test.

The rapid test for respiratory masks, which was developed in mid-March 2020 in response to a recommendation by the European Commission, has met with great interest among manufacturers and importers. In order to provide important details on the test and its conditions and to enable companies to decide for themselves whether their products are eligible in principle for the rapid test, the IFA has now published answers to frequently asked questions.

"In addition to describing the underlying specifications and scope of the test, it is particularly important to explain to interested companies who should have respiratory protective equipment tested at all, and under what conditions," says Dr Peter Paszkiewicz, head of the IFA's testing and certification body. Many companies are enquiring regarding the time and costs involved, he adds. And finally, he points out the importance of explaining that products tested in this way do not constitute normal personal protective equipment in accordance with the European PPE Regulation, and that their approval expires after 12 months.

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