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Difficulties encountered by health care workers with the use of N95 disposable masks and Elastomeric respirators during COVID 19 pandemic

Authors:

Y. C. Waniganayake ,

Sri Jayewardenepura General Hospital, Nugegoda, LK
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H. K. D. K. Nadeeshani,

Sri Jayewardenepura General Hospital, Nugegoda, LK
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P. S. L. S. Buddhadasa,

Sri Jayewardenepura General Hospital, Nugegoda, LK
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G. K. Iresha.,

Sri Jayewardenepura General Hospital, Nugegoda, LK
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S. K. Jayatilleke

Sri Jayewardenepura General Hospital, Nugegoda, LK
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Abstract

Shortage of N95 face masks has become a global problem during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study objective was to assess the experience of health care workers (HCWs) on use of N95 disposable (N95D) masks and reusable elastomeric respirators (ER). A self-administered questionnaire was given to HCWs at Sri Jayewardenepura General Hospital who used N95D masks and ER during June 2020. The 46 participants comprised mainly of nurses. Most HCWs believed that N95 masks were required for non-aerosol generating procedures. Adverse events were reported by all who used ER compared to 66% of HCWs who used N95D masks (p<0.01). HCWs who used N95D masks for a longer duration had experienced more adverse events (p<0.05). N95D masks should be conserved for settings where aerosol generating procedures are performed, due to shortage and adverse events. Use of N95D masks should be limited to shorter durations to minimize discomfort.

How to Cite: Waniganayake, Y.C., Nadeeshani, H.K.D.K., Buddhadasa, P.S.L.S., Iresha., G.K. and Jayatilleke, S.K., 2021. Difficulties encountered by health care workers with the use of N95 disposable masks and Elastomeric respirators during COVID 19 pandemic. Sri Lankan Journal of Infectious Diseases, 11(1), pp.18–22. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljid.v11i1.8344
Published on 30 Apr 2021.
Peer Reviewed

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