Both Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) DRIVe and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) put out a call this week for comments on potential evaluation criteria and testing protocols for an improved mask design challenge.
Input will help determine the structure of the challenge itself, which will evaluate submitted novel mask designs. Related technologies will also be allowed, but the effort is geared at acquiring designs that are more comfortable, fit better and meet predefined performance standards like protection for the wearer and prevention of escape from the mask by certain particles.
Private sector partnerships are also being considered as a method of supporting the challenge’s outreach efforts. Both those looking to provide input and those looking to partner up are encouraged to submit to DRIVeComments@hhs.gov by 5 p.m. EST on Jan. 15, 2021.