Are Safety Shields Effective in Protecting Against COVID-19?
This pandemic has taught us more about biosafety than we ever thought we’d need to know. Preventative measures have now become the norm. Protections against COVID-19 like PPE and splash safety shields are now so ubiquitous that you’ll see them in an NFL game on the sideline.
Nowhere are these precautions more important than in medical facilities and labs, where scientists and first responders spend long hours in close proximity with potentially deadly viruses. While we don’t know everything about COVID-19 yet, we have learned that biosafety is of utmost importance to anyone handling specimens that could pose a danger, especially ones that form droplets or become aerosolized.
Here are the facts: the CDC recommends that clinical or laboratory staff utilize precautions like PPE and splash safety shields. So are these plastic barriers effective in protecting against COVID? In a word: absolutely.
How (and Why) We Created Our Shield Over a Decade Ago
Our experience making safety barriers goes back a couple of decades — well before COVID-19 was our reality. For years we’ve provided safety shields in industrial settings. These devices meet OSHA compliance requirements, making them essential across a number of different industries.
How did we do it? Our safety shield is a polycarbonate shield attached to our flexible arm that can be positioned in the exact location to provide optimal protection from chips, debris, and anything else that can damage the face or eyes. It wasn’t just about OSHA compliance though–these safety shields were designed so that everyone could feel safe doing their job. Nobody should ever have to risk injury.
Why a Safety Shield Has Now Become the Norm for COVID-Facing Industries. It Works.
Most recently, our safety shields have improved clinical safety for everything from test kit processing, working with point-of-care instruments, pathology grossing stations and food service sneeze guards. Just like in industrial settings, our safety shields have proved invaluable for lab technicians who need to adjust the barrier to the optimal height and angle for their protection and comfort. This solid transparent barrier has made performing their vital tasks a lot easier. They’re able to adjust and keep their hands below the shield, while enjoying full visibility with what they’re working on.
Once the COVID-19 pandemic hit, it was important for lab personnel to be able to process test kits and handle potentially infectious materials with an additional layer of protection. Coupled with PPE, the safety shield gives those technicians one more layer of protection. This extra layer has proven to be vital in lowering the risk of infection. How vital? The CDC now recommends a splash safety shield in addition to PPE when handling infectious agents like COVID-19.
We’re grateful for the opportunity to provide shields to some of the country’s largest COVID-19 test processing facilities, as well as other innovations related to the pandemic. It’s been so gratifying to see how our work with clients, especially when integrating their American ingenuity and know-how, has helped the US during this time of crisis. At the end of the day, we just care about the safety of those responding to the pandemic. It’s humbling to know that we can play a role in that.