Do industrial N95 respirators meet the requirements to be used in healthcare? - A possible solution to respirator shortages during the next pandemic

Am J Infect Control. 2021 Sep;49(9):1194-1196. doi: 10.1016/j.ajic.2021.03.014. Epub 2021 Mar 24.


Shortages of surgical N95 respirators (surgical N95 FFRs) can occur during a pandemic. To understand if industrial N95 FFRs have FDA required fluid penetration resistance and flammability, five NIOSH approved N95 models were evaluated using the ASTM F1862 method and flammability using the 16 CFR 1610 method, respectively. Three models passed both fluid penetration resistance and flammability indicating that some N95 models on the market can be used as surgical N95 FFRs during a pandemic.

Keywords: Biocompatibility; Flammability; Fluid penetration resistance.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Delivery of Health Care
  • Filtration
  • Humans
  • N95 Respirators*
  • Pandemics / prevention & control
  • Respiratory Protective Devices*
  • Ventilators, Mechanical