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PPE Policy Statement 

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Policy Statement for PPE

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The following Policy Statement for PPE was developed by a Division of Public Health PPE Expert Panel in 2008.

  1. The ability to properly select, use and maintain necessary personal protective equipment is a core competency of public health professionals as defined by the Council on Linkages Between Academia and Public Health Practice (

  2. The OSHA and the Wisconsin Department of Commerce regulate PPE use in the workplace, including public health agencies, per OSHA General PPE Requirements Standard  29CFR1910 Subpart I  and Wisconsin COMM Chapter 32.

  3. Local Health Departments are responsible for following the standards for PPE set forth the by OSHA General PPE Standard 29CFR1910 Subpart I and Wisconsin COMM Chapter 32.

  4. Avoidance of a hazard should always be the first course of action.  When this is not feasible, attempts should be made to engineer a solution to prevent personal exposure or to otherwise isolate the hazard. 

  5. When engineering and work place hazards are not effective, use PPE.  PPE should be used as a last resort to protect against a hazard. PPE devices alone should not be relied on to provide protection against hazards, but should be used in conjunction with engineering controls, and sound work practices.

  6. Healthcare workers and other volunteers assigned to assist in a public health emergency will be treated and provided the same protections as employees, under OSHA law.

  7. The resources in this website support the following National Public Health Standards Essential Services

    • Essential Service #2:  Diagnose and Investigate Health Problems and Health Hazards in the Community

    • Essential Service #8:  Assure a Competent Public and Personal Health Care Workforce

If you have any questions, e-mail Gwen Borlaug at 

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Last Revised: February 20, 2014