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PPE CASE – Testing of Stockpiled ANSI/AAMI PB70 Level 3 Surgical Gowns

NPPTL Report Number P2018-0104

NIOSH did not find evidence that the stockpiled gowns tested no longer met AAMI PB70 Level 3 requirements. However, only the manufacturer can set or extend the shelf life of their products. NIOSH does not recommend the use of these gowns without conducting representative testing of the stockpile and consulting with the manufacturer about the shelf life.

Cover page for PPE CASE 2018-0104

To instill confidence in workers that personal protective equipment (PPE) will be effective, leaders in the PPE community develop performance standards and then check to see if the PPE meets these standards (i.e., conforms). This process involves a variety of public and private sector entities contributing expertise in the particular PPE and hazards. To bring greater oversight and coordination to these activities, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) developed the National Framework for Personal Protective Equipment Conformity Assessment- Infrastructure.

The Framework assists leaders of the PPE community in developing activities that are appropriate given the risk posed to the worker. NIOSH works with public and private sector entities to assess and improve upon conformity assessment activities by collecting PPE from the marketplace or at the point of use. NIOSH then evaluates the PPE against established standards and uses the test results to provide leaders in the PPE community guidance on post-market sampling strategies, evidence-based criteria for PPE acceptance or rejection, and potential performance requirement updates.

Suggested Citation

NIOSH [2018]. PPE CASE: testing of stockpiled ANSI/AAMI PB70 level 3 surgical gowns. By Kilinc-Balci FS, Fries M, Rottach D, Shaffer R. Pittsburgh, PA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, NPPTL Report Number P2018-0104.