Frequently Asked Questions on Face Masks

In what situations should face masks be used?

A facemask provides a physical barrier to minimize contamination of the nose and mouth with respiratory droplets. It is recommended that following a risk assessment people who are symptomatic should wear a facemask when being transported around a care facility or between facilities.

What things need to be considered when choosing the right PPE for the job?

PPE used at a workplace must be:

  • Selected to minimize risk to work health and safety
  • Suitable for the nature of the work and any hazard associated with the work
  • A suitable size and fit and reasonably comfortable for the person wearing it
What are the maintenance requirements for PPE?

To ensure PPE continues to minimize any potential risk for the worker, PPE must be maintained, repaired or replaced and stored correctly which includes making sure it is clean, hygienic and in good working order.

What are the possible problems that may arise when using PPE?

Using PPE may give rise to problems that without proper management, could become a health and safety risk. For example:

  • Wearing PPE may adversely affect how well tasks can be performed—PPE can restrict vision or mobility.
  • It may be uncomfortable to wear and some workers may not be able to wear the recommended PPE at all due to sensitivities
  • It may create new hazards through its use - some items might hinder the body’s natural cooling mechanisms by preventing evaporation of perspiration.
What are the types of face masks available?

Face masks, earloop masks, procedure masks, pain relief masks with beads, multi-purpose masks etc. are available for purchase.