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What is the CDC? Explaining Approval Processes

Nov 3, 2022 | 1 comment

Due to the 2020 worldwide COVID-19 virus outbreak, many American individuals have only recently learned about the CDC for the first time. However, the CDC, which stands for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has been at the forefront of protecting global health for more than 75 years. Without the CDC, the world wouldn’t be nearly as safe from public health threats such as environmental health issues, injuries, disabilities, workplace hazards, and chronic diseases. With the CDC’s wide-reaching reputation cementing it as the gold standard for national health agencies, let’s explore their history and how they approve face-masks for retail distribution.


CDC History

The CDC opened its doors on July 1, 1946, in a small building in Atlanta with the primary goal to prevent malaria from spreading across America. With the limited resources of 400 employees and a $10 million budget, the agency focused on prohibiting mosquitos from further spreading this malaria virus. In the years following, the CDC expanded its focus to include all communicable diseases and to help provide assistance to state health departments when requested.

Two major health crises in the 1950s, being polio and the Asian flu pandemic, helped establish the CDC’s reputation and credibility. The creation of the smallpox surveillance unit in 1963 would eventually lead to the virus being completely eradicated from the world by 1980, which further showed the public of the CDC’s immense potential.

Today, the CDC has been the leading agency to respond to the Coronavirus outbreak crisis in 2020. Working alongside the FDA and other major health agencies, the CDC has been spearheading the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccines. Since its early days in 1946, the CDC has grown to be a major operating component of the Department of Health and Human Services and is recognized as one of the world’s top premiere health, prevention, and preparedness agencies.


CDC Mask Approval Process

The CDC partners with NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) in the ongoing mission to produce new scientific knowledge and effective prevention practices that organizations can adopt in their workplace. We’ve written a blog previously that details NIOSH’s mask approval process, and the CDC’s partnership with NIOSH establishes this exact same approval process. Meaning that any mask displaying the official NIOSH symbol is also a CDC approved product. If you’re curious about the NIOSH face-mask approval process, or the layout of their labels, visit our blog here detailing how to spot authenticated masks. In addition to NIOSH’s list of approved masks, the CDC website has several recommended tips to better help the public ensure that they’re wearing their mask properly, which includes:

  • It’s important to check that your mask fits snugly over your nose, mouth, and chin.
  • Make sure no air is flowing from the area near your eyes or from the sides of your mask.
  • Do not wear masks with an exhalation valve, vent, or other openings.
  • Do not wear a mask that’s wet or dirty.

Pacific Medical Products

Listed below are some of the CDC Approved medical masks available for purchase on our website:

We understand there’s a lot of concern about fake masks. We purchase all of our masks from Medline or McKesson (two of the world’s largest 3M distributors) who, by contract, can only buy them direct from the manufacturer. Every mask is 100% authentic with lot numbers that can be tracked back to the manufacturer. Quality and trust are of utmost importance to us at Pacific Medical Products.

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