MUNDELEIN, IL--(Marketwire - July 13, 2011) - A new surgical face mask from Medline Industries, Inc., that is shown to inactivate 99.99 percent of laboratory tested flu viruses, including imminent pandemic and seasonal strains of influenza viruses, such as H1N1, Avian flu and Swine flu, has been cleared by the FDA to be marketed in the United States.
Mundelein, Illinois-based Medline is the exclusive distributor of the BioMask™ in the United States to hospitals, nursing homes, surgery centers, hospitality and retail chains. Medline is also the exclusive healthcare distributor of the BioMask™ face masks in Canada and Europe. The BioFriend™ BioMask™ surgical face masks are developed and manufactured by Filligent Limited based in Hong Kong.
In independent laboratory (in vitro) tests, the BioFriend™ BioMask™ face masks inactivate 99.99% of tested influenza viruses upon five minutes contact with the surface of the face mask against the following influenza viruses: influenza A subtypes and strains, H1N1, H3N2, H2N2; avian flu subtypes H5N1, H9N2, H5N2; swine flu subtype H1N1; equine flu subtype H3N8; and Influenza B, under tested contact conditions.
"Seven years of research and development have resulted in a surgical face mask that has proven effective at inactivating several tested strains of viruses when they come in contact with the mask. The BioMask is an essential protective device in the healthcare market today," said Frank Czajka, president of the Proxima Division at Medline. "We are excited to provide a mask that may reduce cross contamination, and give healthcare facility staff and patients a level of safety and security that has never been attained before."
The FDA-cleared BioMask™ has a hydrophilic plastic coating that rapidly absorbs aerosol droplets away from the outer surface of the mask. The first and second layers of the mask are treated with different compounds that swiftly inactivate influenza viruses. It can be worn for over five hours but should be replaced if damaged or soiled with blood or other bodily fluids. One model of the BioMask™ face mask features a unique convex design, which is engineered for maximum fit, comfort and breathability.
"By reducing the bio-burden on the face mask itself, Filligent's antimicrobial/antiviral technologies may improve protection in the hospital, workplace and battlefield," said Melissa Mowbray-d'Arbela, CEO of Filligent.
As the largest privately held manufacturer and distributor of healthcare products in the U.S., Medline manufactures and distributes more than 125,000 products to hospitals, extended care facilities, surgery centers, physician offices and home care dealers. Recently named one of the "100 Best Places to Work in Healthcare," Medline is headquartered in Mundelein, Ill. and has more than 1,100 dedicated sales representatives nationwide to support its broad product line and cost management services.
Filligent is a global innovation powerhouse that develops disruptive technologies and products to address unmet health needs in medical, consumer, industrial and government / military markets around the world. It has developed a series of revolutionary protective health technologies that rapidly trap and inactivate a broad range of dangerous pathogens and chemicals before they can enter the human body. Filligent's mission: Save Lives; Stay Strong. Follow our disaster response work in Haiti, Pakistan and Japan.