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Respirator use medical evaluations: Physicians only?

August 27, 2012
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respiratory protection testQuestion: Are physicians the only medical professionals allowed to perform medical evaluations for respirator use?

Answer: No. A variety of health care professionals may do this depending on the scope of practice permitted by the state's licensing, registration, or certification agencies. Each employer must check with the state licensing agency to see if other health care professionals under their state law can independently perform this evaluation, or must do so under the direction of a licensed physician. See attachment 3 of this OSHA document titled "Q & A on the respiratory protection standard." It references all the State Licensing Boards in the United States, to assist in determining compliance with this provision.

Answer provided by Wes Maertz, CSP, technical support specialist, B.S.E in Occupational Safety, and a Grainger employee for 14 years. Wes answers safety questions in each issue of Grainger’s “Think Safety.”

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