Crosstex launches antimicrobial masks to fight the flu

Crosstex, a division of Cantel Medical, is now offering the Crosstex Ultra Sensitive Medical Face Mask, treated with Biosafe antimicrobial, in specific markets outside the U.S.

The new mask has been proven effective against H1N1 and other Influenza A strains as well as such microorganisms as MRSA, Staphylococcus aureus, VRE, Enterococcus faecalis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Salmonella enterica, according to the company.

"Biosafe antimicrobial chemically binds to the outer mask surface and begins killing the harmful microorganisms upon contact," said Gary Steinberg, CEO of Crosstex. "In fact, testing confirmed that our new medical mask killed between 98.5% and 99.999% of the trapped viruses and bacteria within 5 minutes of contact with the mask, generating a long-lasting shield that greatly reduces the cross-contamination risk from touching the mask itself."

When finished with the mask, the unique water-based antimicrobial composition of Biosafe further allows for environmentally safer disposal than with traditional masks and those with other coating agents, he added.

Within the U.S., the sale of face masks treated with Biosafe for medical applications is subject to a 510(k) clearance by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. At this time, Crosstex is awaiting publication of the latest revision of the FDA Guidance Document pertaining to antimicrobial treatments of medical devices prior to the filing of its application.

Biosafe has passed all U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-required toxicity tests and has an approved EPA label, the company noted. EPA approval covering the sale of the treated mask in the U.S. for non-medical applications is pending.

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