Difference Between Standard PPE and Medical-Grade PPE

Many jobs need personal protective equipment (PPE) for various scenarios. The most well-known type of PPE, especially to the public since the global pandemic, is medical-grade equipment. The other kind is standard protective equipment. Today, we wanted to take the time to go over the difference between standard PPE and medical-grade PPE, as well as some of their similarities.

Medical Grade PPE

This level of PPE is most commonly used in hospitals, dentists’ offices, and nursing homes. Pieces like the face mask are even used by the public these days, but others, such as face shields, safety goggles, and disposable aprons, are primarily used by medical professionals.

Due to COVID-19, PPE such as these have become even more crucial for medical workers’ safety, but they’ve been used for years to protect against other viruses, bacteria, and diseases. Usually, if a patient is infectious enough, doctors will put them in a quarantined room to help stop the spread of illness.

There are also two levels of protection depending on the situation the medical professionals are dealing with. Level 1 is used by workers who might come into contact with any body fluids from a patient suspected of having an infectious disease. Level 2 is used when workers perform any aerosol-generating procedures around the same type of patient since the germs would be much easier to inhale or absorb into the skin. The following are the pieces of PPE that you would need in each scenario.

Level 1:

  • A pair of rubber gloves
  • Safety goggles or a face shield
  • Fluid protection face mask
  • Disposable apron

Level 2:

  • A pair of rubber gloves
  • Safety goggles or a face shield
  • FFP3 respirator
  • Long-sleeved fluid protection gown

After seeing this, if you realize that your facility might need some new medical personal protective equipment, you’ll want to check out what we have available to you in our online store.

Standard PPE

This level of PPE is used by all non-medical jobs that need protection for their workers. These professions include construction, factory work, agriculture, and waste services. The most common equipment used is steel-toed boots, respirators with filters, abrasion and heat-resistant gloves, and brightly colored uniforms.

These different PPE types help protect workers from falling objects, moving vehicles, toxic gases, fires, and sharp objects. The threat of physical harm is much higher here than it is for medical workers, so they must remain fully protected.

Their Similarities

In terms of the PPE itself, the only two similar pieces are masks and gloves, but people still wear them for vastly different reasons. Medical professionals wear masks to stop diseases while laborers wear them to block out toxic fumes. Doctors and nurses use gloves for the same reason as masks, but gloves have a totally different purpose for on-site workers, as they protect against sharp materials and flames.

Even though the difference between standard PPEE and medical-grade PPE is pretty vast, the main similarity they share is keeping their users as protected as possible. Even though the dangers between professions vary, the level of risk does not. You could easily get hurt or die in either field, so workers often use PPE to stop that from happening, which it does quite well.