Physical distancing is no longer required and face coverings are required if not fully vaccinated 
Staff/Faculty may request a face covering from EH&S. Students may request a face covering from The Well.


Respiratory Protection Program Guidelines

Respiratory Protection

EH&S evaluates workplaces for possible airborne hazards and recommends ways to reduce these hazards when found. When appropriate, we will fit campus workers with respirators and provide annual training on their proper use. EH&S evaluates a person's ability to safely wear a respirator prior to a respirator being issued in accordance with Cal/OSHA regulation 8 CCR 5144
Voluntary Respirator Use is characterized by the employee requesting to use an N95 respirator when not required by the employer (e.g., COVID-19, wildfire smoke).

Mandatory Respirator Use is characterized by the employer requiring the employee to wear an N95 respirator when performing potentially hazardous activities (e.g., certain laboratory operations, medical settings with biohazards).  

For more information contact



Voluntary Use



Employees who are interested in using respiratory protection voluntarily should email to to find out if they are eligible. 

COVID-19: Employees may request N-95 for voluntary use for COVID-19. Please complete the COVID-19 prevention training in addition to the steps below. 


Here are the components that must be fulfilled annually in order to be respirator qualified.

  1. Request (Online)
  2. N-95 for Voluntary Use Training (Online in the UC Learning Center)
  3. Appointment (In-Person)

Step 1. Request

Complete the Voluntary Use Respiratory Protection Request form online.

Step 2. Training

Register for and complete the “N-95 Respiratory for Voluntary Use"  training course (course code RI-ESECO0128-UCLOL0058) in the UC Learning Center.

Steps for a successful training completion:

  1. Go to the URL
  2. Login using your UCR NetID and password
  3. Enter the word "N-95 Respirator for Voluntary Use" into the Search box (Search icon is on the top left side of the screen)
  4. Click on the "N-95 Respirator for Voluntary Use" title (course code RI-ESECO0128-UCLOL0058), and click on the blue  "Register" or "Start" button
  5. EH&S can verify the training requirement once you've completed the course

Step 3. Appointment

Once you have completed your training, EH&S will provide you with information on appointments and/or office hours to pickup your N-95 respirator. During the appointment you will: 1) Confirm fit, 2) Obtain a copy of the training handout, 3) Complete documentation and acknowledgment.

Step 4. Acknowledgment

Since the use of a respirator is voluntary, you will be asked to sign an acknowledgement of use that will be sent to your supervisor and kept on file.

Mandatory Information for Employees Using Respirators
when not Required Under the Standard Appendix D to Sec. 1910.34

Respirators are an effective method of protection against designated hazards when properly selected and worn. Respirator use is encouraged, even when exposures are below the exposure limit, to provide an additional level of comfort and protection for workers. However, if a respirator is used improperly or not kept clean, the respirator itself can become a hazard to the worker. Sometimes, workers may wear respirators to avoid exposures to hazards, even if the amount of hazardous substance does not exceed the limits set by OSHA standards. If your employer provides respirators for your voluntary use, or if you provide your own respirator, you need to take certain precautions to be sure that the respirator itself does not present a hazard.

As a reminder, you should do the following:

  1. Read and heed all instructions provided by the manufacturer on use, maintenance, cleaning and care, and warnings regarding the respirator’s limitations.
  2. Choose respirators certified for use to protect against the contaminant of concern. NIOSH, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, certifies respirators. A label or statement of certification should appear on the respirator or respirator packaging. It will tell you what the respirator is designed for and how much it will protect you.
  3. Do not wear your respirator into atmospheres containing contaminants for which your respirator is not designed to protect against. For example, a respirator designed to filter dust particles will not protect you against gases, vapors, or very small solid particles of fumes or smoke.
  4. Keep track of your respirator so that you do not mistakenly use someone else's respirator.

If during the course of your work at UCR you job duties change and you are required to wear respiratory protection, you will need to adhere to the guidelines outlined in the Requirements section.

Mandatory Use


Here are the components that must be fulfilled annually in order to be respirator qualified. There is a charge of $92.01 fee per person, per year for the respirator qualification program:

  1. Request (Online)
  2. Training (Online in the UCR Learning Center)
  3. Medical Clearance to wear a respirator (Online)
  4.  Fit Testing (In-Person)

Step 1. Request

Whether you are requesting a respirator for the first time or are renewing, please complete the Respiratory Protection Request form online. You and your supervisor will receive a copy of the request via email. There is a charge of $92.01 fee per person, per year for the respirator qualification program and the Supervisor should contact EH&S Industrial Hygiene with an FAU for processing. Any questions regarding this process can be directed to

Step 2. Training

Register for and complete the “Respiratory Protection — Online” training course (course code RI-ESTOP0072) in the UCR Learning Center. 

Steps for a successful training completion:

  1. Go to the URL  
  2. Login using your UCR NetID and password
  3. Enter the word "Respiratory Protection - online" into the Search box (on the left side), and click on "Go"
  4. Click on the "Respiratory Protection - online" title (course code RI-ESTOP0072), and click on the "Register" button
  5. Verify that the box is checked next to eCourse, and click on "Submit"
  6. EH&S can verify the training requirement once you've completed the course

Step 3. Medical Clearance

Once you've completed the Respiratory Protection Request form, EH&S will email you a unique log in code to complete your online Medical Evaluation questionnaire provided through 3M. Please be sure you check the email provided in your Request form for this link. If you have questions about this, please contact

Step 4. Fit Testing

Once you have completed your Training and Medical Evaluation, EH&S will provide you with a link to schedule your fit test so that you can choose an available date and time that works best for you! If you are renewing your annual certification, you may be asked to bring your current respirator with you to the fit test.

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