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What is PPE?

What is PPE?

Currently, due to the coronavirus pandemic, fear has been taking over the population. We have become accustomed to seeing other people wearing a mask or gloves. There are even many who are making PPE manually at home.

PPE is personal protective equipment. It is, in reality, any device that a person uses with the aim of protecting themselves from some risk to their health or safety, such as an infection.

However, there are different types of PPE depending on its specific purpose. In addition, they must meet a series of characteristics, and be correctly evaluated to be useful. In this article we explain everything you need to know about it.

What is PPE?

A PPE, as we have mentioned, is a protective device for personal use. They are usually manufactured in a solidarity way to control a risk. So they come into play at this global moment, due to the current risk of infection due to the pandemic.

However, PPE must be used as part of a specific protection program. The latter is important, since the danger, the manufacturing of the product, and even the training of the people who are going to use it must be carefully evaluated.

This is because, for a device to truly serve as protection, it must be properly cared for and maintained. They are a basic element for any risk control strategy. The majority of people who use PPE are healthcare professionals.

What are they used for?

As they are different types of devices, their uses are also very diverse. Firstly, PPE can be used for lower risk. Within this category we find, for example, helmets or glasses. They are used for small shocks or knocks.

However, as we have pointed out, the most common PPE is for healthcare use. These are usually used to protect against infection. However, we must highlight that there are also specific devices against radiation or contamination.

In the case of healthcare workers, the most common thing is that the PPE consists of gloves and masks. It also usually includes specific protective clothing and eye protectors to completely cover the person.

PPE against coronavirus

Currently, the vast majority of PPE is being manufactured and used to protect healthcare personnel against coronavirus infection. It is a very important measure due to the high risk of transmissibility and contagion of SARS-CoV-2.

Furthermore, we must highlight that for a PPE to be valid it must meet a series of characteristics. That is why health systems are saturated and lack material, since many centers were not prepared for a pandemic.

These teams are made up, first of all, of a mask. It allows healthcare personnel to be close to a person with symptoms, protecting the respiratory tract. Let us remember that contagion happens through droplets expelled from the nose and mouth.

The equipment also includes sanitary gloves, which must be disposable. Along with this, it is advisable to wear an airtight uniform that protects against any possible splash of fluids from the patient. The usual robe doesn't seem to be enough.

It is also recommended that PPE include eye protection. That is, it consists of glasses that stop the access of fluids directed to the eyes. They can be full-face glasses or full face shields.

To remember

We cannot forget that, for personal protective equipment to be useful, it must meet certain characteristics. The ideal is to obtain correct information before using one, since they require knowledge to use, such as knowing how to put it on and take it off without the risk of contamination.

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