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While much of the country struggles to comply with the new requirement for annual fit-testing of N95 filtering facepiece respirators used to protect against tuberculosis, hospitals in Washington state have some advice: Powered air-purifying respirators (PAPRs) are an important tool in decreasing the burden of fit-testing, employee health and safety professionals say. They have had many years to learn that lesson. Based on a rule of the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries in Olympia, they have conducted annual fit-tests since 1995.

Lessons learned: Use PAPRs to avoid fit-tests