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J Occup Environ Med. 2010 Feb;52(2):190-6. doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e3181cc55e1.

How clean is "clean"? Regulations and standards for workplace clothing and personal protective equipment.

Author information

1
Department of Fire Science and Professional Studies, University of New Haven, West Haven, CT 06510, USA. gsirianni@newhaven.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To compile current regulations and advisory recommendations on cleanliness of worker clothing and personal protective equipment and to evaluate the adequacy of criteria for determining whether cleanliness has been achieved.

METHODS:

Systematic review of information provided by federal agencies (eg, OSHA, MSHA, and NIOSH), nongovernmental advisory bodies (eg, ACGIH, AIHA, and ANSI), and manufacturers of protective clothing and equipment.

RESULTS:

We identified an array of terms describing "cleanliness" and the processes for achieving "cleanliness" that were almost never defined in regulations and recommendations. We also found a general lack of criteria for determining whether cleanliness and/or sterility have been achieved.

CONCLUSIONS:

There is need to harmonize cleanliness-related terminology, establish best practices for equipment cleaning and sterilization, implement a signage systems to provide equipment-specific cleaning instructions, and adopt objective criteria for determining what is "clean."

PMID:
20134338
DOI:
10.1097/JOM.0b013e3181cc55e1
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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