Optimizing the Supply of N95 Masks/Respirators

N95 medical mask

Great News! The Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Advanced Sterilization Products (ASP) protocol to be used to reprocess and sterilize up to 480 N95 masks at one time! This protocol is specifically authorized on STERRAD® Systems or Xenex Lightstrike System potentially reusing and extending the use of N95. This is a big step forward in terms of sterilization, but what if your STERRAD or Xenex system is down, needing maintenance or on a long waiting list for maintenance by the manufacturer? Time is not something we have the luxury of waiting on during this COVID-19 pandemic. This is where ERD Medical Equipment Services can help. 

ERD is a Certified Biomedical Solutions Provider specializing in sterilizing solutions. Our technicians have the knowledge and tools to get your sterilizer system up and running quickly with their biomedical technicians able to schedule maintenance or repairs at your convenience. Our technicians are knowledgeable with the recommended methods to successfully decontaminate respirators:

  • Inactivate the target organism, such as the virus that causes COVID-19;
  • Not damage the respirator’s filtration;
  • Not affect the respirator’s fit;
  • And be safe for the person wearing the respirator.

Vaporized hydrogen peroxide sterilizer systems and ultraviolet light environmental decontamination systems have thus far been the most successful in confirming the germicidal efficacy on N95 respirators. 

The following sterilization methods are NOT recommended:

  • Use of ethylene oxide due to significant concerns associated with the potential for repeat inhalation exposure to ethylene oxide residuals
  • Use of ionizing radiation due to degradation in filter performance
  • Use of microwave due to melting respirator near metal components
  • Use of high temperature, autoclave, or steam sue to significant filter degradation

ERD has been building, and will soon launch, their Enhance Biomed Division (EBD) specializing in medical decontamination, deep cleaning and equipment validation. With this division, ERD is one of the most qualified biomedical equipment companies to offer sterilizer maintenance and repair. One of the people working with ERD is Antonio Marshall, a scientist in molecular biology and genetics, who explains, “We will be able to utilize advance methods and protocols to combat emerging microbial threats and common clinical infection related outbreaks.”

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