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FAQS FROM PROJECT FIRSTLINE September 23, 2021

3 Ways to Make Sure That Your N95 Isn't Counterfeit

N95 respirators offer vital protection that keeps yourself, your colleagues and patients safe. As one of the most important pieces of personal protective equipment for frontline health care professionals, buyers need to beware of substandard and counterfeit respirators on the market, particularly during periods of high demand.

  1. Use NIOSH-approved respirators instead of ones approved under international standards such as KN95s

    NIOSH is the national body responsible for evaluating, testing, and approving respirators used within U.S. workplace settings. During COVID-19, it assessed hundreds of respirators claiming to meet international standards and found that most of them do not provide the expected level of filtration by U.S. standards.

    How To Project Yourself From Counterfeit N95s
  2. Check the labeling on your N95 respirator.

    The following is printed on every NIOSH-approved respirator: the word "NIOSH" in visible in block letters along with the Testing and Certification (TC) approval number and a model number. This information must be on the respirator itself and not just on the packaging.

    How To Project Yourself From Counterfeit N95s
  3. Related

    Respirator Basics CDC’s Project Firstline June 25, 2021
    Respirator Basics
  4. Refer to the NIOSH certified equipment list to ensure that you are selecting or purchasing valid NIOSH-approved N95 respirators.

    Certified Equipment List Search
  5. This article is brought to you by the American Medical Association and CDC's Project Firstline. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) formed Project Firstline, a national infection control training collaborative, to provide all health care professionals with foundational knowledge to implement infection control protocols. The AMA is one of the many diverse health care and public health collaborators that is part of Project Firstline.

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