Coronavirus: How to Choose the Right N95 Respirators and Masks

Coronavirus: How to Choose the Right N95 Respirators and Masks

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The use of surgical masks are crucial to battle the outbreak of Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia (COVID-19), some even look for N95 respirators and surgical masks for enhanced protection. What kind of protection does N95 respirators provide? Are all N95 respirators appropriate for medical and healthcare use?

Read Choosing the Right Surgical Masks for more information.

N95 Respirators?N95 Surgical Masks?

N95 respirators can filter ?95% airborne particles, but is not oil resistant.

Some N95 respirators are NIOSH-approved for their filtration efficiency, while some are also FDA-cleared to be used as surgical masks. Therefore N95 surgical masks are those which are both NIOSH-approved and FDA-cleared for airborne disease prevention.

Use model number while looking for N95 Mask / Respirator / Filter online, as some models are designed for industrial but not medical use, and cannot keep out bacteria or viruses.

Commonly used 3M? N95 surgical mask models include 1860?1860S?1870?1870+.

N95 surgical masks may not be necessary in public setting, novel coronavirus COVID-19 is capable of droplet transmission and contact transmission, there are no scientific evidence showing that airborne transmission is possible, while N95 surgical masks are used for airborne prevention.

Why should healthcare workers use N95 surgical masks?

Some medical procedures, such as nasopharyngeal aspiration or intubation, may produce aerosols, which can increase the chance of transmission, thus requiring the use of N95 surgical masks.

FDA: Masks and N95 Respirators

CDC N95 respirators: NIOSH-Approved N95(FDA-cleared models bolded)

*NIOSH = National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety

How to wear N95 respirators correctly?

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A Fit Test will tell you if this model of N95 respirator suits you.

You will need to perform a Fit Check right after you put on the N95 respirator every time. Read the guide provided by the manufacturer whenever necessary.

Image for postImage for postImage for postSource: 3M

3M N95 surgical masks?

(NIOSH-approved and FDA-cleared)

  • For medical use: 3M? 1804/1804S
  • For medical use: 3M? VFlex? 1805/1805S
  • For medical use: 3M? 1860/1860S (1860B/1860SB are not FDA-cleared)
  • For medical use: 3M? 1870/1870+
  • For medical use: 3M? 8612F
  • For medical use: 3M? 8670F
  • For medical use: 3M? 9152

Other 3M N95 respirators?

(NIOSH-approved but not FDA-cleared?

3M? 8000?8110S/8110SCN?8200/07023(ADD)?8210/8210CN/8210V/8210+/8210+CN?8212/8214/8512/8514/8216/8217/7048?8510?8511/8511/8511MX/8511CN/8515/8515CN/8516?8864?9010/9010V/9010CN/9010MX/9132?9105/9105S?9210/9210+/37192(ADD)?9211/9211+?9820/9822

?? N95 ???????????

CDC N95 respirators: NIOSH-Approved N95 (FDA-cleared models bolded)

Image for postKimberly Clark PFR95 46827

  • Kimberly Clark PFR95: 46827/46867?46727/64767?
  • Safe Life: B130?B150
  • Medline: NON24506/NON24506A?NON24507/NON24507A
  • Moldex: 1510/1511/1512/1513/1517?1712?2210G/2212G?3211/3212/3217
  • Pasture: Tm F550G?Tm A520G/A520S/A520CS?PM10?PM15?E520S/E520CS

Image for postMedline NON24506A

  • Precept: 65?3395?65?33395S
  • Prestige Ameritech: RP88020?RP8800?USA-N95-R?USA-N95-S?USA-N95-S
  • Pyramex: RM10
  • Markrite: 910-N95?910-N95S?910-N95FMX?9500-N95?9500-N95S
  • SafeZone: RS-900-N95A

Image for postHoneyWell HC-NB095

  • Shanghai Gangkai: GIKO 1400 (????: GIKO 1200F ??FDA ??)
  • Shanghai Dasheng: DTC3M-1?DTC3B
  • Sperian HoneyWell: HC-NB095?HC-NB295F?HC-NB095FF?HC-NB295FP
  • SteelPro Gerson: 1730

Some FDA-cleared models for medical use are not included in the above list, cross-check with FDA to confirm.

Read Choosing the Right Surgical Masks for more information.

Choosing the Right Surgical Masks (Updated on 8/3?

What are the performance standards for surgical masks/procedure mask/medical mask/face mask? What are ASTM and EN14683?


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