Face Coverings: Key Considerations for Maximizing Comfort and Cost Savings —


Face Coverings: Key Considerations for Maximizing Comfort and Cost Savings

Face Coverings: Key Considerations for Maximizing Comfort and Cost Savings

What should employers look for in face shields to ensure everyone stays protected?

As the United States makes progress against COVID-19, businesses and workplaces are reopening to greater capacities for workers and customers. Naturally, continuing to maintain worker safety is paramount in all industries, not just those deemed high risk. OSHA recently updated their COVID-19-specific guidance at the end of January 2021 and continues to recommend employers provide face coverings for all workers to wear while on duty. In addition, certain workers may also need to wear face shields for additional protection of their respirators or other face coverings to prevent them from getting wet or soiled. While there has been plenty of discussion surrounding the design and materials of face masks, there has not been as much surrounding face shields. So, what should employers look for in PPE like face shields to ensure everyone stays protected—and is able to perform their jobs comfortably throughout the entire workday?

Design

By now you’re likely familiar with the generic face shield, which is a thin layer of plastic that is basically a flat panel that hangs down from the forehead. These type of face shields may or may not meet OSHA recommendations, particularly if being used with respirators. OSHA has stated that “face shields may also be worn on top of a respirator to prevent bulk contamination of the respirator. Certain respirator designs with forward protrusions (duckbill style) may be difficult to properly wear under a face shield. Ensure that the face shield does not prevent airflow through the respirator.” For optimal protection, researchers from the University of Iowa and the Iowa City VA Healthcare System stated, “the shield should extend below the chin anteriorly, to the ears laterally, and there should be no exposed gap between the forehead and the shield’s headpiece.”




Read More:Face Coverings: Key Considerations for Maximizing Comfort and Cost Savings —