The range of biological hazards is growing all the time. As defined by European legislation, there are special requirements for the clothing material used to protect against infective agents. An evaluation of the performance of protective coveralls against these criteria, as part of the overall risk assessment, can assist in selecting the right personal protective equipment to minimise the risk of infection.
Strict medical infection control is essential for preventing the spread of highly infectious diseases – and it is mainly the lack of such strict control in the countries most affected by the recent Ebola outbreak that has been responsible for its severity. In countries with high standards of public healthcare, the risk of transmission is generally considered significantly lower.
The use of personal protective equipment is an essential element of infection control for people responsible for care, treatment, transport, preventive measures and decontamination, not only for their own safety, but also for that of their environment.
DuPont Personal Protection offers protective suits which cover all four classified risk groups for biological hazards in clothing Types from 6 to 3. Depending on the form of biological agent, the levels of exposure, the nature of the work and the risk of infection, the barrier performance of the fabric to the relevant infective agent test(s) should be considered. The type of seam and the material's mechanical robustness also needs to be taken into consideration.
Simply wearing protective clothing will not guarantee protection however. The protective effect of the suits can only be ensured if the clothing is put on and taken off in the correct way and if correct working procedures are followed. DuPont can provide information support on the subject of donning and doffing, including videos that can be used for training personnel.
*photo credit: EU Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection
DuPont trains Fleet Street broadcasting and print media news teams for the possibility of a flu pandemic or other biohazard emergency.