Q&A: A lot of fit-testing questions

OSHA Healthcare Connection, October 12, 2010

Q: Where does someone get training for fit testing? Are there different ways to do fit testing? Can we just get something with a strong odor and see if the person can smell it? If someone passes the fit test, there is no guarantee that the next time they put the mask on that they would have passed. Maybe they squeezed the nose bridge better for fit testing. What happens if the employee does not pass the fit testing?

A: That’s a lot of questions. Here’s the answer to the first one.

The trainer’s qualifications for performing OSHA-compliant fit testing are minimal, according to Appendix A of the Respiratory Protection standard:

“The employer shall ensure that persons administering QLFT [qualitative fit test] are able to prepare test solutions, calibrate equipment and perform tests properly, recognize invalid tests, and ensure that test equipment is in proper working order.”

For the rest of the answers, click here.


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