Procare Connectivity Limited.
Procare Connectivity Limited.

Guide to Classification and Selection of Protection Levels for Isolation Gowns

In medical, laboratory, and special work environments, isolation gowns are a crucial component of personal protective equipment (PPE) that can block contaminants and pathogens, essential for safeguarding the health and safety of workers. With the advancement of technology, isolation gowns have developed into different types, including PP isolation gowns, PE isolation gowns, and PP+PE isolation gowns. This blog post will explore the protection levels of different types of isolation gowns and provide a selection guide.


Classification of Protection Levels for Isolation Gown 


Isolation gowns are classified based on their ability to resist liquid penetration and block pathogens. The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) have established four protection levels:


Level 1: Minimal Risk


Level 1 isolation gowns are suitable for basic care, standard isolation, and as visitor cover gowns. They provide the least barrier to liquids, generally used in low-risk situations.


Level 2: Low Risk


Level 2 isolation gowns are used for procedures with low risk of liquid exposure. They are suitable for tasks like drawing blood from veins or working in a pathology lab. These gowns provide a higher level of liquid penetration protection than Level 1 isolation gowns.


Level 3: Moderate Risk


Level 3 isolation gowns are designed for moderate risk situations, such as arterial blood draws, inserting intravenous lines, or working in an emergency room. They offer a moderate level of liquid barrier protection and are more durable than Level 2 isolation gowns.


Level 4: High Risk


Level 4 isolation gowns are used in high-risk situations, such as surgery and handling infectious diseases that require protection against bloodborne pathogens. They provide the highest level of liquid and pathogen protection.


Types of Isolation Gowns


PP Isolation Gowns


PP isolation gowns are made of polypropylene and are favored for their lightweight and good breathability. They are typically used in low-risk environments, such as routine diagnostic activities, offering basic liquid and particle blocking.


PE Isolation Gowns


PE isolation gowns are suitable for situations requiring higher protective strength due to their greater strength and durability. In these environments, there is a greater likelihood of coming into contact with bodily fluids. PE isolation gowns effectively block liquid splashes and microbial penetration and are commonly used in surgical environments or when dealing with highly infectious diseases.


PP+PE Isolation Gowns


PP+PE isolation gowns combine the breathability of PP with the protective quality of PE. The PP inner layer ensures breathability and comfort, while the PE outer layer provides enhanced liquid resistance. These isolation gowns are suitable for moderate-risk environments, such as isolation areas or handling infectious materials, and are a popular choice in various medical settings.


Selection Guide of Isolation Gown 


Risk Assessment


Before selecting an isolation gown, conduct a risk assessment to determine the type and level of risks that may be encountered in the work environment.


Consider Material Characteristics


Choose materials based on the needed protection level and comfort. PP isolation gowns are suitable for general use, PE isolation gowns are appropriate for high liquid exposure, and PP+PE isolation gowns balance comfort and protection.


Comfort and Durability


Consider the comfort and durability of the isolation gown to ensure that workers can remain comfortable and effectively protected during long shifts.


Cost-Effectiveness


While meeting protection needs, also consider the cost-effectiveness of the isolation gowns to achieve a reasonable allocation of resources.


Making the correct selection and use of isolation gowns is crucial for protecting workers from potential hazards. PP isolation gowns, PE isolation gowns, and PP+PE isolation gowns each have their features and applicable scenarios. By comprehensively considering risk levels, work nature, comfort, durability, certification standards, ease of donning, and cost-effectiveness, a reasonable choice can be made to ensure the safety and health of workers.