NFPA 1999: Protective Clothing for Emergency Medical Opperations

Stedfast has developed and certified protective barriers to meet and exceed the performance requirements of NFPA 1999. This standard under The National Fire Protection Association addresses garments, gloves, and face wear designed to protect emergency medical workers against exposure to liquid-borne pathogens.

NFPA 1999 defines minimum performance for protective clothing as required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Final Rule (29 CFR 1910.1030) Protecting Health Care Workers from Occupational Exposure to Bloodborne Pathogens. The Final Rule states:

"Upon exposure, the employer shall provide at no cost to the employee appropriate personal protective equipment, such as, but not limited to, gloves, gowns, laboratory coats, face shields or masks, and eye protection, mouthpieces, resuscitation bags, pocket masks, or other ventilation devices. Personal protective equipment will be considered 'appropriate' only if it does not permit blood or other potential infectious materials to pass through or reach the employee's work clothes, street clothes, undergarments, skin, eyes, mouth, or other mucous membranes under normal operating conditions.

As specified under this standard, NFPA 1999-2008 offers specific performance criteria that involve exposing protective clothing materials to surrogate virus challenges utilizing a specific time and pressure protocol. Each type of clothing must resist penetration to blood-borne pathogens as determined by this test. Additional garment requirements cover overall:

  • liquid tight integrity
  • material strength
  • physical hazard resistance
  • seam strength
  • and closure strength."

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