5 Key Considerations When Purchasing Your PPE

PPE, is one of the most important components in the fight against COVID-19, and has become a product in high demand in the previous year. When it comes to acquiring PPE, a few key considerations have stood out at us. Its relevance in terms of safety is self-evident: without PPE, personnel on the front lines of the infection fight are completely exposed to the fatal virus. As rules become more stringent and more organisations require masks, gowns, gloves, face shields, and goggles, to mention a few items, there are some vital considerations to make when purchasing these items.

1: Comfort and Ergonomics

For effective use, the comfort and ergonomics of your PPE are critical. More uncomfortable PPE will induce users to doff it, erring on the side of comfort and exposing them to risks, according to common sense. Furthermore, ergonomics and comfort will help health professionals, who require the equipment the most, to maximise their efficiency and function at their best without being hampered by uncomfortable clothing.

Good quality PPE will give optimum comfort as well as maximum protection, allowing the user to perform his or her job effectively.

2: Threat Level

Identifying the level of risk connected with the use of PPE can help you make the best decisions. While most PPE needs for a certain location will be specified by the legislation and government standards for that category's WHS and risk management, some will require the manager or people to make their own PPE decisions.

Risk management in clinical or pathological settings will aid in determining cross-contamination prevention methods and, ultimately, the safety of your employees.

After determining the threat levels in the lab, procurement and WHS workers will be able to make informed judgments about what PPE is required to assure complete staff protection.

3: Protection and Compliance

PPE compliance will be stated where regulations exist. To use PPE in some applications in Australia, TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration) permission is required. TGA approval guarantees that the product you're buying is genuine, will provide the protection it claims, and is suitable for the purpose. Understanding the requirements and protection standards can aid in making the best option for your application.

4: Reputation/Ethics

Buying on reputation is a safe way to buy. To purchase off a known and reputed supplier or manufacturer will basically allow you to know what you are buying. As seen in the height of the pandemic, manufacturers particularly in China and other Asian countries produced vast quantities of PPE such as masks and gowns, because of the ease of manufacturing such products. While this may have injected more into a very high demand market, the temporary nature of the manufacturing has resulted in a fracture of this system. Since, most people have turned to local manufacturing and reputable suppliers.

Furthermore, manufacturers' reputations in Asian markets are quickly deteriorating. Allegations that China, Malaysia, Thailand, Pakistan, and other nations are employing child labour and poor working conditions to create large quantities of goods at low prices continue to arise. In such factories, boarding workers are frequently subjected to low pay and poor living circumstances. As a result, there's a good chance that low-cost PPE is made unethically. Choose not to buy unethically and instead to support trustworthy, high-quality businesses.

5: Supply Availability

The supply chain's reliability is a major component in being able to purchase PPE. Buying something and knowing it will come on time relieves procurement employees of a significant amount of work and gives security to the organisation to whom it is supplied. This is frequently the case with locally produced goods. These are usually the ones with the best quality and most consistent sourcing. Furthermore, choosing locally created products is a win-win situation: it generates jobs, supports our economy, and ensures the finest possible quality.


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