Personal protective equipment for preventing highly infectious diseases due to exposure to contaminated body fluids in healthcare staff

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Studies of simulations of exposure showed doffing may be safer with double gloves and following CDC methods. Active training may lead to less errors in donning and doffing than passive training.

Healthcare staff are at much greater risk of infections such as Ebola Virus Disease or SARS than people in general. One way of preventing infection is to use personal protective equipment, such as protective clothing, gloves, masks, and goggles to prevent contamination of the worker. It is unclear which type of equipment protects best and how it can best be removed after use. It is also unclear what is the best way to train workers to comply with guidance for this equipment. This study reviewed the safety of clothing that aims to protect healthcare workers from viral or bacterial infections. Six studies simulating exposure provide some clues to the effects of breathable clothing and gowns but nothing about goggles or facemasks. The quality of the evidence is low because of limitations in the studies, indirectness and small numbers of participants.

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