Project BREATHE – Prototype Respirator Evaluation Utilizing Newly Proposed Respirator Test Criteria
Jung-Hyun Kim, Raymond J. Roberge, Ronald E. Shaffer, Ziqing Zhuang, Jeffrey B. Powell, Michael Bergman, and Andrew J. Palmiero
Machine and human subject testing of four prototype filtering facepiece respirators (FFR) and two commercial FFR was carried out utilizing recently proposed respirator test criteria that address healthcare worker-identified comfort and tolerance issues. Overall, two FFR (one prototype, one commercial model) were able to pass all eight criteria and three FFR (two prototypes, one commercial model) were able to pass seven of eight criteria. One prototype FFR was not tested against the criteria due to an inability to obtain satisfactory results on human subject quantitative respirator fit testing. Future studies, testing different models and styles of FFR against the proposed criteria, will be required to gauge the overall utility and effectiveness of the criteria in determining FFR comfort and tolerance issues that may impact user compliance and, by extension, protection.
Keywords: filtering facepiece respirators, prototypes, proposed respirator test criteria.