What is the CWA 17553:2020 normative?

The CWA 17553:2020 normative was made to establish a single guideline for hygienic masks fabrication at a European level. It was designed by the European Committee for Standardization and it was published on June 17th 2020. This normative allows the setting of a guide for minimal requirements for design, production and evaluation of the filtering capacity…

Filter masks aren’t considered neither as Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) nor as Medical Devices (MD). The objective of the March 17th 2020 decree-law, number 18, matched with the April 24th 2020 decree-law, number 27, is to reduce or avoid the diffusion of small drops of spit or mucus between people. On the market, this is achieved through putting at everyone’s disposal lots of different mask typologies, which are often being imported from non-EU countries.

Due to the importance of its functionality during the process of the infection risk and the heterogeneity of the characteristics of the available products, the European Committee has recognized the need for a regulation that favours the harmonization of the masks’ security level through guidelines related to protection, fabrication and evaluation of performance.

The guidelines established by the Workshop Agreement, not only do they offer an objective frame of the masks’ characteristics, but they also provide precise instructions related to:

  • Positioning tests
  • Mask dimensions
  • Washing requirements
  • Labeling

Through the publication of CWA 17553:2020, the CEN, makes its own contribution to the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, reducing the fragmentation between different markets, as a way of protecting the consumer’s security in the UE market.

The European Commission for Standardisation – CEN
The CEN is an European regulatory organism, whose objective is the harmonization and composition of voluntary technical regulations in collaboration with national and supranational regulatory organisms (for example the International Organization of Standardization, ISO) on all sectors except for the electronics sector (which is taken care of by CENELEC) and the telecommunications sector (regulated by ETSI). Inside the CEN are included the national normative beings of 34 UE countries that transpose the directive (in Spain, the UNE).

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