Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Infection Prevention and Control for Healthcare Personnel. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

Learn more about Infection Prevention and Control for Healthcare Personnel (online CE course)
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

  • Wear PPE whenever you anticipate contact with blood or body fluids (eg, wear gloves when drawing blood)
  • Put on (don) appropriate PPE BEFORE starting a task or entering the patient's room (when necessary)
  • Remove (doff) PPE and perform hand hygiene before moving on to the next patient or task
The OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens (BBP) Standard requires the use of appropriate PPE, which must be provided by your employer (at no cost to the employee), when there is a reasonable chance of exposure to blood or other potentially infectious material (OPIM). The PPE must prevent blood and OPIM from passing through to, or coming in contact with, the employee's clothes, skin, eyes, mouth, or other mucous membranes. In addition to disposable PPE, the employer must ensure that reusable PPE is clean, laundered (no home-laundering), and repaired when necessary. PPE must be readily accessible and remain in the work area in which it is used.
Examples of PPE routinely worn in a healthcare setting that is appropriate for procedures that involve exposure to blood and OPIM include:
  • Gloves: Protect hands
  • Gowns/aprons/lab coats: Protect skin and/or clothing
  • Masks and respirators: Protects mouth, nose, and/or respiratory tract
  • Goggles: Protect eyes
  • Face shields: Protect eyes, nose, and mouth