CHA News Article

New Guidance Available on PPE for First Responders Exposed to Opioids

A new publication from the InterAgency Board establishes guidance on personal protective equipment (PPE) for first responders exposed to synthetic opioids. While the guidance notes that most routine encounters between patients and emergency medical services (EMS) staff or law enforcement do not present a significant threat of toxic exposure, the recent rise of synthetic opioid use poses increased risk. The guidance seeks to proactively address that risk by establishing standards for PPE selection and use, decontamination, detection and medical countermeasures. Though the guidance is written for EMS staff, its recommendations are also applicable to hospital settings.