Respiratory safety training and fit testing is intended for McGill staff and students who require respiratory protection while performing activities connected to McGill University. Although the elimination or reduction of respiratory hazards through substitution or engineering controls is preferred, there may be instances in which the use of a respirator is required.
EHS provides respiratory protection training and fit testing for both reusable half/full-face and N95 respirators for McGill staff and students only.
Students should first contact their Faculty or School for an appointment for N95 fit testing through the Student Wellness Hub, as they offer this service for students at no charge. However, if students choose to do N95 fit testing at EHS, they will be charged the fees noted below (a receipt will be provided).
The cost for fit testing is:
- $50 for qualitative fit testing (N95 respirators)
- $50 for quantitative fit testing (available for reusable half/full-face respirators)
Note that this fee does not cover the purchase of a personal respirator.
Please rpp.ehs [at] mcgill.ca (email us) if you have any questions.
What is Fit Testing?
In order to protect the user from respiratory hazards, a respirator must fit the user's face and form a tight seal. The purpose of a fit test is to verify an effective seal with the respirator and the user's face.
Qualitative fit testing relies on the user to detect taste and smell to measure the leakage into a respirator and Quantitative fit testing uses a machine to measure the leakage into a respirator.
Fit testing is done after respiratory safety training is completed and also verifies that the user is able to demonstrate the required level of competency in how to inspect the respirator prior to use, don the respirator, perform a user seal check, and doff the respirator.
The Fit Test Process
- Prior to fit testing, the user must complete the Health Validation Form Validation santé. Note that if ‘Yes’ is answered to any of the questions in Section 2, then the user must have Section 3 completed by a physician.
- A fit test shall be done before the initial use of a respirator, and then repeated every 2 years. If the user undergoes a change that may affect the fit of the respirator (ex. weight loss/gain, dental changes, cosmetic surgery, etc.) then EHS should be advised and fit testing should be repeated.
- After the fit test, those using a reusable half/full-face respirator need to complete the Monthly Inspection form for Air Purifying Respirator (APR) masks
- Half and full-face reusable respirators should be cleaned using the 3M Guide to Clean a Reusable Respirator
The day of the fit test:
In order to ensure a proper seal with the respirator, the user must be clean shaven and long hair must be tied back. Facial piercings and jewelry may also need to be removed.
If you are currently using a reusable half/full-face respirator, please bring it with you to the appointment, along with any PPE that you will use (safety glasses, hardhat, hearing protection, etc).
In addition, for qualitative fit testing for N95 respirators, please do not eat, chew gum or drink anything (other than water) 30 minutes prior to your fit test appointment.
How to Register for a Fit Test
Quantitative Fit Testing
Quantitative fit testing uses a machine to measure the leakage into a respirator.
Please complete the Quantitative Fit Test registration form.
If paying by credit card, the Paying Participant Training Form needs to be received before your registration is processed. ** Note that we are not accepting credit card payments at this time
Note that typically, EHS has 3M respirators available for fit testing. If you have a different make, it may not be possible to have your respirator fit-tested.
Qualitative Fit Testing
Qualitative fit testing relies on the user to detect taste and smell to measure the leakage into a respirator.
Quantitative fit testing EHS' preferred method of ensuring that a tight-fitting respirator can be worn by a user without having any leaks. However, qualitative fit testing may be done for those who will wear an N95 respirator.
- Students should first contact their Faculty or School for an appointment through the Student Wellness Hub for N95 fit testing, as they offer this service for students at no charge.
- McGill staff or students can complete the Qualitative Fit Test registration form.
- If paying by credit card, the Paying Participant Training Form needs to be received before your registration is processed. ** Note that we are not accepting credit card payments at this time
Please do not eat, chew gum or drink anything (other than water) 30 minutes prior to your fit test appointment.
** Update as of Fall 2020: EHS will now be offering a limited number of N95 fit test and training sessions for those who require the use of an N95 respirator for their work or research on campus. Due to the shortage of N95's, you will be required to bring a box of the N95 respirators that you have available for use to the fit test.
Documentation for the Respiratory Protection Program
- McGill's Respiratory Protection Awareness Guidelines
- Monthly Inspection form for Air Purifying Respirator (APR) masks
- Respiratory Hazard Assessment form (Bioaerosol contaminants)
- Respiratory Hazard Assessment form (Chemical contaminants)
- Health Validation Form
- Validation santé
- 3M Guide to Clean a Reusable Respirator
- 3M 1870 Wear it Right Poster
- 3M 1860 Wear it Right Poster
- Moldex 1500 Fit Guide