The Legitimacy of N95 Respirator
Many companies produce N95 Mask Respirators, one of which is the 3M Company. 3M company, also known as Minnesota, Mining, and Manufacturing Company, diversified American corporation manufacturing. They produce a varied range of products, including abrasives, adhesive tape, and some related products. The 3M company consists of different stockholders that hold additional shares in the company. With this type of company, it proves the co legitimacy of the N95 respirator.
When the CoronaVirus pandemic happened, there was an abrupt increase in masks’ demand, especially the N95 mask respirator. There was a time when masks were out of stock everywhere. It compromised the health security of the people, most especially those working in the hospitals, combatting the virus fearlessly. This situation was very alarming, and they saw the urgency about this matter. To address the problem regarding the availability of N95 masks, the companies had to step up with their production.
Production of N95
Because of the great demand in the market, companies had to speed up their production of the masks. Before the pandemic happened, the norm dictates that only those who have an “inhouse facility” were allowed to manufacture N95 masks. With this type of policy, only minimal N95 masks were produced and can barely suffice during the Covid19 outbreak.
Thus, it was announced by the government in India, the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), that they will let companies, as long as they have a valid license to allow them to manufacture N95 masks even with the use of outside facilities to speed up their production. This new policy aims to increase the output of N95 to sustain the demand during this time of the pandemic.
The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) even came up with parameters issuing licenses for companies to manufacture these said types of masks. With the new policy and considerations they made, they were trying to develop a solution to increase these masks’ availability, especially since it is required in this COVID – 19 crisis.
Although there are now many manufacturers for this type of respirator, and some governments are now trying to impose different policies in terms of the N95 production, they will still undergo approval from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). NIOSH is the one who is responsible for conducting research and the one who gives recommendations to prevent some of the preventable work-related injury and illness.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
The other agencies often use the recommendations given by this non-regulatory agency to develop and enforce workplace safety and health regulations. Aside from the suggestions they offer, they are also responsible for providing guidelines and imposing some restrictions that need to be followed by the other agencies or manufacturers. The other manufacturers follow the NIOSH procedures and requirements, primarily if related to health and safety matters.
Below are lists of some NIOSH regulations related to the production of any respiratory health equipment:
- The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) would grant educational training programs
- Conduction of investigations at places of Employment for the Health Hazard Evaluation (HHE) program and occupational safety and health research
- Implementation of the World Trade Center Health Program
- This institute as well approves any respiratory equipment such as the personal protective equipment used in the hospital like L-188 N95 respirator
This institute is established to help ensure the safety and health of any working conditions by providing further research studies, training programs, information, and education in occupational safety and health. Aside from this, this institution also provides national and world leadership to prevent work-related illnesses, injury, disability, death, and the like.
The N95 Respirator mask does not just undergo many screenings and approval from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, but another agency works side by side with the NIOSH; this is Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA).
Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA)
Like the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), the OSHA also ensures the safety and healthful working conditions for workers by enforcing and setting standards and providing training, outreach, and education to the closely associated people in a health care setting.
Below are some lists of the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) responsibilities:
- Provide a workplace free from serious recognized hazards and comply with standards, rules, and regulations
- Examine workplace conditions to ensure that they yield the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) required standards
- They also ensure that all the employees have safe tools and equipment and properly maintained all these equipment.
All of these should be adhered to by everyone, especially those working in a healthcare setting. With the kind of regulations they are imposing, it is clear that they are really after the welfare of the susceptible and vulnerable people.