Can we recommend to facilities in resource poor areas that disposable respirators (masks) be used as long as they are in good condition, including the seal intact? They obviously should be kept outside the ward or clinic in a place where the inside is unlikely to get contaminated with bacilli on the inside of the mask. In our clinics in Peru and Rwanda we recommend the masks be kept on pegs hanging outside the wards, labeled with with providers name, and used for 1 to 2 weeks. Do others agree this is an acceptable practice?
Link leads to: http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/publicat/ccdr-rmtc/96vol22/22s1/22s1i_e.html
Summary: Personal respiratory protective devices (PRPDs) include surgical masks and particulate respirators (e.g., HEPA filter, dust-mist and dust-mist-fume masks). In this document, they are referred to as masks. Masks may provide additional protection against TB transmission when HCWs care for patients with suspected or confirmed infectious TB.
Source: Public Health Agency of Canada
Keywords: Personal Respiratory Protection