Respiratory Protection Standard


The primary objective of the Respiratory Protection Program to protect the employees from atmospheres containing harmful dusts, fumes, gases, vapors, or other respiratory hazards through the use of engineering controls, administrative controls and/or personal protective equipment. When effective engineering or administrative controls are not feasible or practical, or in emergency situations, the use of personal respiratory protective equipment may be necessary to protect the health of the employee.  OSHA has specific standards addressing the use of respiratory protection for worker safety.

OCRS Services

OCRS is responsible for the development, implementation and administration of Vanderbilt University's Respiratory Protection Program.  OCRS will determine whether or not respiratory protection is required. 

If respiratory protection is required, OCRS will provide

  • Respirator fit-testing,
  • Training on proper respirator use and maintenance, and
  • Information to the employee's supervisor on respirator procurement.

Supervisor Responsibilities

If OCRS determines that employees performing certain tasks need respirators, then their supervisors must make sure that those employees

  • Receive respirator medical clearance.  (The Occupational Health Clinic conducts all medical clearance examinations for employees needing respiratory protection.  ) 
  • Are fit-tested to an individually selected respirator,
  • Received training on the care and usage of that respirator. 

Additional Resources

See Also


For questions regarding VUMC Respiratory Protection, please refer to the N95 Respirator Fit-Testing Program or the VUMC Respiratory Protection Program Login Required.

Please contact someone from OCRS Biosafety at if you have a question about the Animal Allergy respirator program.

Please contact Mark Bogard ( if you have questions about respiratory protection or fit-testing in research laboratory areas.