What is the Proper Sequence for Removing Protective Equipment (PPE)?

Proper Sequence for Removing Protective Equipment (PPE)

Personal protective equipment (PPE) is increasingly being used in different workplaces, particularly after the breakout of covid-19. It is essential to know about wearing and removing PPE to prevent transmission of infection best. Proper removal of personal protective equipment is a key component of safe work practices. After being outside of performing something while donning a PPE, it should be removed appropriately. One needs to be careful while removing PPE because some portions of it may be contaminated. The order of removing PPE is gloves, apron or gown, eye protection, and surgical masks.

Firstly the gloves are removed. As the outside of the gloves is contaminated, the outside of the glove is grasped with the opposite gloved hand and peeled off. The removed glove is held in the gloved hand. The second glove is peeled over the first glove using one or two fingers of the ungloved hand. Both gloves are now discarded into a lined waste bin. 

The front part of the apron is also contaminated. Firstly it is unfastened and is pulled away from the neck, touching the insides only. The apron is rolled into a bundle and discarded into a bin. Gown or fluid repellant overall is also removed similarly. Firstly neck and then waist ties are unfastened. The gown is then removed in a peeling fashion. The gown will turn inside out. It is held away from the body and discarded into an appropriate lined waste bin or linen receptacle.

The eye protection equipment like goggles and face shields are also contaminated on the outside. They are removed by holding on the sides or by the headband. The same is disposed into an appropriate waste bin.

The surgical mask is the last to be removed. Like other equipment, the outer surface of the surgical mask is potentially contaminated. The ties are unfastened- firstly the top and then the bottom. Mask is then pulled away from the face without touching the front surface. Mask is then disposed into an appropriate waste bin.

They are put into an appropriate container for decontamination and reprocessing instead of disposing into a waste bin for reusable parts.