Personal Protective Equipment (cont.)
Jeffrey L Arnold, MD, FACEP
Suzanne White, MD
Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD
Raymond J Roberge, MD, MPH, FAAEM, FACMT
IN THIS ARTICLE
Choosing the Right Protective Equipment
Emergency care personnel who provide medical care to victims of hazardous incidents have the responsibility of first protecting themselves by wearing adequate protective equipment. Whenever possible, they will select the level of equipment based on the known properties of the hazard. When the type of hazard is unknown, they will assume a worst-case exposure and use the highest level of adequate protection.
The primary consideration in selecting appropriate equipment is whether it will be worn in the hot zone (exclusion zone or contaminated area) or in the warm zone (contamination reduction zone or area where decontamination of victims takes place). Because victims and equipment should be decontaminated thoroughly before leaving the warm zone, protective equipment is unnecessary in uncontaminated areas (except as noted here).
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