Tag Archives: N95 face mask

Heating could be best way to disinfect N95 masks for reuse

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, N95 face masks have been in short supply. Health care workers, in particular, desperately need these masks to protect themselves from the respiratory droplets of infected patients. But because of the shortage, many have to wear the same mask repeatedly. Now, researchers reporting in ACS Nano, the American Chemical Society publication have tested several methods for disinfecting N95 materials, finding that heating them preserves their filtration efficiency for 50 cycles of disinfection.

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N95 masks contain a layer of “meltblown” polypropylene fibers that form a porous, breathable network. To help capture smaller particles that could slip through the holes, the fibers are electrostatically charged. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended several methods for disinfecting N95 masks, such as heating, ultraviolet (UV) radiation and bleach treatment, but so far they have not been tested extensively, especially for multiple rounds of disinfection. Yi Cui and colleagues wanted to compare five of the methods that could reasonably be used within a hospital setting to see how mask materials hold up to repeated disinfections. Continue reading

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Face Masks Can Be Safely Reused by Pandemic Medical Workers – Study

Medical face masks, which have fallen into short supply during the COVID-19 pandemic, endangering both front line health care workers and their patients, may be safely reused after sterilization, according to initial results from urgent research conducted this week by a University of Massachusetts Amherst environmental health scientist.

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Richard Peltier, a School of Public Health and Health Sciences professor, partnered with Dr. Brian Hollenbeck, chief of infectious disease at New England Baptist Hospital in Boston, to test in his lab whether used N95 face masks were still effective at blocking infectious particles after sterilization. Continue reading

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Filed under coronavirus, COVID-19, N95 face mask