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Palomar College Learning For Success

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Guide for COVID-19

The information shared on this webpage is intended to keep Palomar Community College District employees informed of proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).  Employees must determine a level of risk to occupational exposure in order to be supplied with the most appropriate PPE to wear during work hours. Review the levels of risk.

Once you have determined your level of risk, communicate that level to your supervisor, or department chair, for review. Your supervisor, or department chair, will communicate your PPE needs to Environmental Health & Safety.

It is important to keep in mind that on-site work environments can and will change depending on individual assignments and the amount of people in the areas of campus you will be working. Your assignments and the amount of people in your work environment may depend on the applicable District policies in place at the time of your work assignment. Please reassess your level of risk as your assignment(s) change.

SAFETY MESSAGE

  • While on campus, all employees must maintain at least 6 feet distance between one another.
  • While on campus, all employees must consistently and properly wear the PPE selected for the level of risk identified.
  • Face mask/cloth face coverings properly removed, cleaned and stored or disposed of as applicable to avoid contamination of self, others or the environment.
  • PPE must be regularly inspected, maintained and replaced as necessary.
  • If an employee is required to wear a respirator, it must fit properly fitted and periodically be refitted.
  • While on campus employees should frequently wash their hands for at least 20 seconds with soap, rubbing thoroughly after application.

Occupational Risk Exposure Levels for COVID-19

Very High Exposure Risk: This category covers jobs with a high potential for exposure to known or suspected sources of COVID-19, such as medical providers, medical transport workers, and certain mortuary workers who are treating, transporting, or preparing people who are known or suspected sources of COVID-19.

Recommended Action: These recommendations generally apply in health care and mortuary settings. Most workers in these categories likely need to wear PPE, including gloves, a gown, a face shield or goggles, and a face mask or respirator.

Employees who may fall into this category:

  • Doctors
  • Surgeons

(No district activities should have any Palomar College employees placed into this category).

Very High Exposure Risk  

Medical GownProtects clothing and skin from direct contact with chemicals, biohazards, and other materials.
N95 RespiratorRespirators protect respiratory tract from airborne infectious agents.
Goggles/Safety GlassesProtects eyes from debris, fluids and biohazards.
Face ShieldProtects face, mouth, nose and eyes
Nitrile GlovesGeneral resistance against chemicals and other biohazards.

High Exposure Risk: This category covers jobs with a high potential for exposure to known or suspected sources of COVID-19, such as medical providers, medical transport workers, and certain mortuary workers who are treating, transporting, or preparing people who are known or suspected sources of COVID-19.

Recommended Action: These recommendations generally apply in health care and mortuary settings. Most workers in these categories likely need to wear PPE, including gloves, a gown, a face shield or goggles, and a face mask or respirator.

High Exposure Risk  
Medical GownMedical Gown Protects clothing and skin from direct contact with chemicals, biohazards and other materials
N95 Respirator

N95 Respirator







or






Face Mask
Respirators protect respiratory tract from airborne infectious agents.







Protects mouth and nose.
Goggles/Safety Glasses

Face Shield
Goggles or Safety Glasses






or





Face Shield
Protects eyes from debris, fluids and biohazards.
Nitrile GlovesNitrile GlovesGeneral resistance against chemicals and other biohazards.

Medium Exposure Risk: This category of jobs includes those that require frequent and/or close contact with (i.e., within six feet of) other people who may be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, but are not known or suspected COVID-19 patients.

Recommended Action: Employers should provide employees with general guidance and commonsense methods to reduce exposure and monitor recommendations by the CDC for updates. For engineering controls, consider installing physical barriers, such as clear plastic sneeze guards, where feasible. For administrative controls, consider offering to ill employees and customers face masks or reusable face shields that can be decontaminated. Where appropriate, limit customer and public access to worksites or restrict access to certain areas. Consider minimizing face-to-face contact, and communicate the availability of health resources.

Medium Exposure Risk  
Cloth MaskCloth MaskCDC advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.
Nitrile GlovesNitrile GlovesGeneral resistance against chemicals and other biohazards.

Lower Exposure Risk (Caution): This category covers jobs that do not require contact with people known to be, or suspected of being, infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 nor require frequent close contact with (i.e., within six feet of) the general public. Recommended Action: Employers should provide employees with general guidance and common-sense methods to reduce exposure and monitor recommendations by the CDC for updates. No additional engineering controls or PPE are recommended at this time.

Lower Exposure Risk  
Cloth MaskCloth MaskCDC advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.

Resources on Mask Safety

Information provided by the CDC on the following: 

  • How to Wear Cloth Face Coverings
  • CDC on Homemade Cloth Face Coverings
  • How to Sew a Cloth Face Covering
  • How to use a Cut T-shirt Cloth Face Covering (no sew method)
  • How to use a Bandana Cloth Face Covering (no sew method)

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. They should be routinely washed depending on the frequency of use.

A washing machine should suffice in properly washing a cloth face covering

Individuals should be careful not to touch their eyes, nose, and mouth when removing their cloth face covering and wash hands immediately after removing.