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Elastomeric Respirator

This page contains links for using the elastomeric respirator, including video demonstrations of decontaminating your respirator between patient encounters and end-of-shift cleaning.


Appropriately Don Elastomeric Respirator

  1. Ensure filters are securely attached to the elastomeric respirator.
  2. Don the elastomeric respirator and tighten straps
    Please note: The respirator should fit snugly against your face.
  3. Perform a negative pressure seal test before moving to a potentially contaminated area:
    a. Pinch both filter cartridges closed at the same time.
    b. Inhale gently for 10 seconds.

The seal is good when the respirator collapses and remains collapsed against your face. You may release the filter cartridges and breathe normally.

Please note: If the facepiece did not collapse or if any leakage is noticed, readjust the straps and perform the test again. If a leak remains, the respirator will not provide adequate protection and must not be used.

Decontamination Between Patients

Seeing multiple patients requires decontamination of the respirator with each new encounter! We have some videos on how to decontaminate your Elastomeric respirator below:


End of Shift Decontamination

All done with your shift/clinical day? Be sure to decontaminate your respirator before you head home!

Decontamination Protocol for Reusable Elastomeric Respirators

N95 Respirator



  1. Perform hand hygiene before putting on respirator.
  2. Make sure you have the correct size of respirator and that there are no defects.
  3. Hold the respirator in the palm of your hand with nosepiece at fingertips and the straps facing the floor.
  4. Position the N95 under your chin with the nosepiece up.
  5. While holding the N95 in place, pull the top strap over your head so it rests high on the back of your head.
  6. Pull the bottom strap over your head and position the strap around your neck, below your ears.
    PLEASE NOTE: If you have long hair, the strap must be positioned beneath your hair.
  7. Untwist the straps.
  8. Using both hands, mold the nosepiece of the respirator to the shape of your nose by pushing downward and outward while moving your fingertips down both sides of the nose piece to obtain a good seal.
  9. Perform a fit check by placing both hands completely over the respirator.
  10. Exhale sharply
  11. If air leaks around your nose, adjust the nosepiece as described in STEP 8 above
  12. If air leaks at the respirator edges, adjust the straps back along the sides of your head.
  13. Perform a fit check again if an adjustment is made.
  14. Perform hand hygiene.


After leaving patient's room (where you have already removed gloves and outer gown, placing them in the appropriate container) and closing the door:

  1. Perform hand hygiene
  2. Pull bottom strap over your head
  3. While maintaining your hold on the first strap, use your other hand to pull the top strap over your head
    PLEASE NOTE: Do not touch front surface of the respirator
  4. Be sure to extend your arms straight out in front of you with the respirator in order to avoid contaminating your scrubs
  5. if N95 will be reused or used all day, place in a paper bag

Decontamination and Reuse of Filtering Facepiece Respirators (

PAPR (Powered Air-Purifying Respirators)

The links below provide information about use of a PAPR, including steps to don this respirator, assemble the PAPR, and cleaning a PAPR after use.

Donning/Doffing PAPR

  • Check PAPR battery to ensure an appropriate charge.
  • Check that hose is securely attached from the filter assembly to the PAPR hood.
  • Don PAPR assembly and turn the power on.
  • Put on the hood after donning other pieces of PPE.

Decontamination checklist for PAPR

Current EPA-approved disinfectants for COVID-19 (

  1. Verify the wipe's effectiveness against human coronavirus (aka COVID-19)
  2. Put on disposable gloves
  3. Ensure nearby waste receptacle
  4. Detach PAPR Hood from hose
  5. Detach hose from battery/filter/blower assembly
  6. Detach belt assembly from battery/filter/blower assembly
  7. Decontaminate the outer surface of the battery/filter/blower assembly with an approved decontamination wipe
  8. Dispose of the wipe
  9. Place the battery/filter/blower assembly aside in a clean area
  10. Decontaminate the outside of the hose with an approved decontamination wipe
  11. Dispose of the wipe
  12. Place the hose aside in a clean area
  13. Decontaminate the outside of the PAPR hood with an approved decontamination wipe
  14. Dispose of the wipe
  15. Place the PAPR hood aside in a clean area
  16. Decontaminate the belt assembly with an approved decontamination wipe
  17. Dispose of the wipe
  18. Place the belt assembly aside in a clean area
  19. Ensure all surfaces are exposed to the decontamination solution for the recommended contact time. Different wipes have different contact times, which you can view at the EPA website
  20. Remove residual cleansing agent. Moisten a clean cloth or towel with clean water and wipe down the outside surface of the battery/filter/blower assembly, the outside of the hose, the outside of the PAPR hood, and the belt assembly
  21. Dispose of the cloth or towel in the appropriate container