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	worker wearing a respirator

Input: Committee on Personal Protective Equipment (COPPE)

In response to a request from the National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL) at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), the Institute of Medicine has formed a standing Committee on Personal Protective Equipment for Workplace Safety and Health.

The committee provides a forum for discussion of scientific and technical issues relevant to the development, certification, deployment, and use of personal protective equipment, standards, and related systems to ensure workplace safety and health.

The next COPPE meeting will discuss the COE concept. The meeting is scheduled for Mar 4, 2009 in Pittsburgh.

Topics that may be addressed by the Committee on Personal Protective Equipment or by sponsored workshops and future studies by IOM committees include:

  • the need for expert guidance on state-of-the-art materials and systems, and laboratory and field research strategies;
  • development of criteria and standards for practice and operations, including management and communications; and
  • identification of best practices for interagency cooperation with partners and stakeholders.

Additional topics include

  • training and education;
  • creating equipment user-guidance documents;
  • improving access to information by stakeholders; and
  • performance measurement strategies.

The committee will also provide liaison and oversight to ad hoc study committees requested by NIOSH and approved by the Institute of Medicine and the National Academies, and will coordinate with the Academies' on-going review of NIOSH Research Programs .

More information regarding this committee can be found on the National Academies website .