Measuring the Resistance of Medical Face Masks
ISO 22609:2004 Test method for measuring the resistance of medical face masks to penetration by a splash of synthetic blood
ISO 22609 standard has been developed to check the resistance of medical masks against penetration by a splash of synthetic blood.
ISO 22609 test method aims to ensure the quality of protective face clothing/masks designed for health care providers to reduce their exposure to blood and body fluids, which may carry infectious agents.
ISO 22609 Test Method
- Preconditioned test samples are fixed on the specimen-holding fixture.
- Synthetic blood is then sprayed horizontally onto the specimen mask to replicate the conditions of the mask being splashed by a punctured blood vessel.
- If the mask has pleats, they should be spread out during mounting to expose a single material layer, using the specimen’s center as the target area.
- Resistance of test samples is evaluated at three different velocities corresponding to human blood pressures i.e. 10.6 kPa, 16.0 kPa, and 21.3 kPa. Test results show the efficacy of masks at each velocity. The highest blood pressure level at which medical face mask samples exhibit an acceptable quality limit of 4.0 determines the rating assigned to the mask.
- Any evidence of synthetic blood penetration on the side of the medical face mask contacting the wearer’s face constitutes failure. Results are reported as “pass/fail”.
Importance of ISO 22609 Test
In medical settings, healthcare providers and workers face an increased vulnerability to contracting infection due to their direct exposure to patient wounds and bodily fluids. This increases the risk of exposure to various infections in hospital environments. To address this, splash-resistant masks have been developed to serve as a pivotal line of defense by forming a barrier for the health care workers and potentially infectious bodily fluids and other secretions.
ISO 22609 plays an important role in substantiating the performance of medical face masks claiming to have splash-resistant barrier properties. ISO 22609 serves as a standard guideline that helps manufacturers meet registration criteria set by regulatory authorities.
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ISO 22609 is an international standard that specifies the test methods and requirements for the evaluation of surgical face masks against penetration by synthetic blood. ISO 22609 testing helps to ensure that the intended face mask is capable of providing an adequate level of protection against fluid penetration, thus reducing the risk of infections in medical settings.
ISO 22609 test is applicable to medical masks claiming to have splash-resistant barrier properties.
ISO 22609 test takes 4-5 weeks to complete.
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