A guide to face coverings: which one to buy, where to use it and how to wash it
- Credit: Archant
Stephen Bignell of Sera Supplies answers your questions about PPE and explains the benefits of choosing a certified face covering.
Q: What should I look for when choosing a face covering?
A: Choose a community mask (an everyday reusable mask) that’s been tested and certified to meet European Union Standards and minimum government requirements. You can trust that they will perform reliably and provide a good level of protection.
We have used medical-grade face masks in hospitals and other health settings for years. The European Union has set standards for community face coverings, used in the UK, to ensure efficiency and safety when using them.
We’ve spent a long time sourcing our personal protective equipment (PPE) to ensure it is high-quality, certified and meets these standards.
Q: What type of face masks are available and how can I find the best one?
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A: There are many types of face masks available, but I recommend using a tested and certified face mask as they’ve been designed to meet specific standards of performance.
Homemade masks vary a lot, and though they may offer some protection against large fluid droplets (caused when coughing) they’re unlikely to protect you against smaller particles or bacteria.
Choose from a medical mask or respirator mask. Medical masks are loose-fitting and protect the wearer against large airborne particles, saliva and other bodily fluids produced by sneezing or coughing.
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Respirator masks are more precisely fitting. They provide additional protection against fluids and smaller airborne particles.
We offer various types of face masks and coverings. Our washable face masks meet and surpass the European Union community face covering standards. They are available for adults and children. When washed, they offer the equivalent bacterial filtrations as a Type 1 disposable medical mask. After 50 washes at 40 degrees, they still meet the new standard of more than 90pc bacterial filtration.
Q: Why do I need to wear a face mask?
A: Face coverings can help minimise transmission of viral or bacterial infection when talking, coughing, or sneezing. They can also help prevent you from touching areas of your face and transferring bacteria via your hands.
Q: When and where do I need to wear a face mask?
A: In England, you’re now required to wear a face covering in several indoor settings, including when using public transport, entering a shop and in various entertainment venues. They’re also needed in funeral homes, public areas of hotels and hostels, beauty salons, places of worship, hospitals and GP surgeries.
You must wear a face covering before entering any of these places and keep it on until you leave.
There are some circumstances where you aren’t required to wear a face covering. For full guidance on when and where you’re required to wear a face mask, visit gov.uk.
Q: What other PPE should I be wearing?
A: It depends on your job and what you are doing - if you work in a hospital, you’ll need more PPE than a person travelling on a train or bus. Advice for coronavirus is changing all the time. It’s important to get the latest government and medical guidance before deciding which PPE you should be using.
We stock a selection of recommended PPE to suit your needs including nitrile examination gloves, medical-grade disposable aprons, infrared thermometers and adjustable face visors.
Q: How can we help you?
A: Since we started offering selected PPE, it’s grown to be a significant part of our business, so much so that we’re making it a permanent part of what we do.
We’ve built a network of high-quality suppliers and established an efficient supply chain that’s enabled us to respond to the shortage of PPE that’s arisen during coronavirus.
Visit serasupplies.com to view our full range of face masks and PPE. There’s free delivery on orders over £40 - we offer global shipping, secure ordering and five-star customer service.
Call 01727 600 102 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.