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A respirator mask or face filtering piece (FFP) are the most reliable sources of PPE facial protection. Both are evaluated and tested to meet clinical requirements to a high level. They grip the face and form a seal which leads to minimal leakage. 

An N95 respirator mask is regulated by US standards and will filter out at least 95% of airborne particles. FFPs are regulated as per the EU and are divided into three classes: FFP1, FFP2 and FFP3. FFP2s are the most suitable for handling COVID-19 patients. They are designed to protect both the wearer and the patient

Surgical masks are an alternative. Loose-fitting, they are subject to leaking and are not deemed as reliable a method of PPE for the wearer. They do, however, protect patients from respiratory droplets and should be worn by triage workers. 

Most masks are designed to be disposable. They should not be worn beneath the chin or stored in the pockets of gowns between patients. Read more about the types of PPE mask here.

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