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Title: The changing face of healthcare worker perceptions on powered air-purifying respirators during the SARS outbreak
Authors: Khoo, K.-L.
Leng, P.-H.
Ibrahim, I.B.
Lim, T.K. 
Keywords: Health care worker
Powered air-purifying respirator
Severe acute respiratory syndrome
Issue Date: Jan-2005
Citation: Khoo, K.-L., Leng, P.-H., Ibrahim, I.B., Lim, T.K. (2005-01). The changing face of healthcare worker perceptions on powered air-purifying respirators during the SARS outbreak. Respirology 10 (1) : 107-110. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Objectives: Before the advent of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), use of the powered air-purifying respirator (PAPR) in the setting of pulmonary tuberculosis has been controversial. Data regarding health care worker (HCW) perceptions and problems encountered with the use of the PAPRs were lacking. Methodology: A questionnaire-based survey was conducted of HCWs who had used the PAPR in clinical practice during the SARS outbreak, when use of the PAPR was mandatory and widespread. Evaluations of the question of whether HCWs were receptive to the use of the PAPR and their perceptions of common problems that were encountered were made. Perceptions of comfort, ease of use, visual, hearing, breathing and speech impairment, perceived protection against SARS and usage preferences were recorded. Results: Only a minority of respondents found the PAPR uncomfortable, despite some interference with communication. Despite its much higher cost, the majority (84%) preferred to use the PAPR rather than the N-95 respirator when treating suspected SARS patients. However, opinions were equally divided regarding its use when treating patients with pulmonary tuberculosis; with 51% being in favour. Conclusions: With the advent of highly contagious diseases that pose a major occupational hazard to HCWs, the use of the PAPR has become more acceptable in clinical practice.
Source Title: Respirology
ISSN: 13237799
DOI: 10.1111/j.1440-1843.2005.00634.x
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