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Marking a Century of Respiratory Protection

Sep 03, 2019

For more than 100 years, innovations and technological advancements have continued toFactory worker wearing respiratory protection improve the safety and health of workers around the world. From improved fall protection equipment to better machine guarding to lockout/tagout and beyond, more tools than ever are available to help ensure that workers get home safe.

To celebrate the anniversary of one such innovation, NIOSH is holding the first annual Respiratory Protection Week, September 3 to 6. Throughout the week, NIOSH will highlight the history of respiratory protection and explore current certification work and science dedicated to improving respiratory protection.

The observance marks 100 years since the U.S. Department of Mines initiated the first respirator certification program in the U.S. and expands on N95 day, founded by NIOSH in 2012 to emphasize the importance of respiratory protection, particularly N95 respirators.

“Respiratory Protection Week honors both the history and the future of the efforts by researchers and practitioners to protect workers from airborne toxins,” says NIOSH Director John Howard, M.D. “NIOSH’s own ongoing work in respiratory protection represents both a century’s worth of experience in preventing disease for millions of working men and women who have relied on respirators to protect their lungs, and a new century’s research in developing improvements in respiratory protection.”

Further information on the history of respiratory protection can be found on NIOSH’s website.

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