The growing global shortage of N95 masks has been exacerbated by the new coronavirus pandemic, and it is the first health care workers who are struggling to be on the front line, and the situation is now expected to ease. A consortium of researchers from Harvard University, Stanford University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the University of California, Berkeley, and others evaluated existing N95 purification methods and planned a practical process for implementing them.
The Federation has released a report detailing the advantages and disadvantages and gaps in the application of three methods: heating, ultraviolet (UVC) and vaporized hydrogen peroxide (VHP) treatment. The report can be found on the website n95decon.org.
The researchers say the report aims to provide valuable information on how public health officials can purify and reuse masks in the face of insufficient masks. We are brainstorming to ensure that the operating procedures are as safe and efficient as possible.
The N95DECON report provides important details, links to protocols and business services, and a quick reference infographic to help health officials assess which methods are best suited to their particular situation.
When N95DECON scientists released their first wave of information, they were conducting new purification experiments on N95 masks to clarify their safety and efficacy. This new knowledge will be used to create toolkits that provide a scientific basis for the agency’s choices when updating standard operating procedures and submitting them to FDA for approval.