There has been a lot of information shared on the internet regarding the effectiveness of face coverings and face masks. On October 19th, OSHA issued a News Release to clarify that N-95 respirators are effective in protecting workers from the virus that causes COVID-19, as are other NIOSH approved respirators. Read here for a short written explanation of how a respirator works to protect the wearer from the virus and other hazards.
Respirators and face coverings, including N-95 respirators, should be used with other COVID-19 safety practices such as distancing at least 6 feet from others, good hand hygiene, covering coughs and sneezes and staying home when you are sick. Due to the pandemic, employers can require employees to wear face coverings, however if an employer requires respirators, they are to have a Respiratory Protection Program. Contact our risk management team if you need help developing an OSHA compliant Respiratory Protection Program.