The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health is alerting employee health professionals about a counterfeit N95 respirator on the market. The telltale sign is that the NIOSH abbreviation is misspelled as “NISH N95” on the front of the respirator.
“While the TC number and private label holder are valid, this unapproved unit can be identified by the misspelling of NIOSH on the front of the respirator,” the institute states, posting a picture of the equipment on its website (1.usa.gov/1PHGkXU). “When NIOSH becomes aware of counterfeit respirators or those misrepresenting NIOSH approval on the market, we will post them here to alert users, purchasers, and manufacturers.”
N95 respirators that are certified by NIOSH have demonstrated that they can filter out a minimum of 95% of airborne particles under worse-case test conditions.
The FDA also determines if the respirators demonstrate an acceptable level of fluid and flame resistance, which is particularly important in healthcare occupational settings like surgical suites. The FDA clearance process also requires that certified respirators have labeling that is relevant to healthcare personnel, such as information about the presence of natural rubber latex.