Quantitative Face Fit Testing Training – PortaCount (APC Method)

During our quantitative face fit testing training, we will teach you how to carry out quantitative face fit testing using the Ambient Particle Counting (APC) method using the TSI PortaCount machine.

Due to the coronavirus we have had to make significant changes in how we conduct our face fit testing train the tester course on site at our customers premises.

Further to conducting face fit testing for the NHS during the coronavirus pandemic and following guidance from the Health and Safety Executive the following measures will help us to minimise the risk of contamination whilst still delivering the highest quality service.

Only a maximum of 4 people to be in the room with the instructor at any time. 

The room provided has to be large enough for the tester plus 4 people to allow for social distancing and to allow for the setting up of the equipment. 

The room requires natural ventilation and access to clean drinking water is also required.

Attendees will always be expected to practice safe social distancing during the testing session.

Where social distancing cannot be maintained due to the needs of the job then face coverings (masks) will be used to minimise the risk and will be done for the shortest amount of time possible.

All masks for your staff need to be supplied by you our testers will bring their own masks and gloves with them.

Want us to come and do your face fit testing for you? Why not visit our face fit testing page for more information.

Training can be conducted on your site/premises anywhere in the UK for 1 – 4 trainees. Alternatively, we run open courses where you can book 1 or more places on a public course – see our upcoming events list. All our courses include an instructor pack.

If you need to answer the question where can I learn to be a face fit tester? or how to do face fit testing? then we can help. All our face fit train the tester courses can include a face fit testing kit/portacount machine (available to purchase at time of booking) and all training includes a face fit certificate.

If you are looking for a train the trainer course, sadly this course does not exist. In order to be qualified to teach others to conduct face fit testing first of all you must attend a train the tester course like ours and be trained up by a qualified professional. Then you need to gain experience in face fit testing. It is only once you have gained the knowledge and experience that you would be able to train others to conduct face fit testing. By attending a train the tester course you will be able to conduct face fit testing on others.

RPE fit testing should be conducted by a competent person. To be competent the person should have adequate knowledge, and have received adequate instruction and training in the the 16 areas detailed in HSE INDG 479.

This is why our train the tester course is a 1 day course, it would not be possible to teach all of the 16 areas of competency that are required by the HSE in half a day and we want to train face fit testers to the highest possible standards.

Our Competent TSI PortaCount Fit Test Operator Training is a full day course. The quantitative face fit testing training is aimed at those who require an in-depth knowledge of Face Fit Testing using the TSI PortaCount. To ensure we cover current legislation not only does our course cover the Competent Fit Test Operator criteria set out in INDG 479 but, also includes many additional practical elements including troubleshooting, how to plan and manage a fit test program and in addition to this, an advanced practical session.

This course is conducted on your site for a maximum of 4 trainees and is delivered by one of our competent instructors who are also fit2fit accredited for quantitative face fit testing.

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Quantitative Fit Testing

Quantitative face fit testing will provide a numerical measure of the RPE’s effectiveness. This is known as a fit factor.

These tests give an objective measure of the face fit, something not offered with a qualitative test.

Quantitative testing requires specialised equipment such as the Portacount. They are more complicated to carry out than qualitative tests, however this type of test is required for all full face mask respirators. A qualitative test can only be used on half mask respirators.

The TSI Portacount is an ambient particle counting device. It works by measuring the number of particles that leak into the mask, comparing this with the particle number challenging it. This is done while the wearer carries out a number of exercises.

Course Content

Newly revised information relating to Face Fit Testing includes document INDG 479 which states that Face Fit Testing should only be conducted by a trained ‘Competent Person’. For example, competency includes knowledge of the theoretical aspects of Fit Testing, RPE and methodology as well as skills in practical Face Fit Testing.

Most importantly a ‘competent person’ should have sufficient experience of Face Fit Testing using a variety of different makes and models of RPE. Our Quantitative Face Fit Test Operator Training course is a full-day course aimed at those who have responsibility to manage or conduct Fit Testing in the workplace.

  • Background to Face Fit Testing
  • Legislation and Guidance, INDG 479, HSG53 etc.
  • Installation and Operation of Equipment
  • Sampling from the Facepiece
  • Fit Test Protocols and Pass Levels
  • Set-up and Running Procedures
  • Practical face fit testing
  • Troubleshooting & Problem Solving
  • Fit Test Failures and Re-Tests
  • Planning & Managing a Fit Testing Program
  • Data Handling and Storage

Who Should Attend Our Course?

This course is for anyone who wishes to conduct face fit testing using the quantitative method on the full range of tight fitting RPE i.e. full face mask, half face reusable mask, SCBA, disposable masks etc.

In order to conduct quantitative face fit testing you must have access to a PortaCount machine which cost thousands of pounds to purchase.

If you are only wanting to test reusable half masks and disposable masks then the qualitative taste test may be more cost effective and appropriate to your needs.

Training Requirements

This 1 day training course will be conducted by a competent fit2fit accredited assessor. The face fit training can be carried out on any site that has suitable facilities (power, seating, toilets, clean water etc.) in the UK for a maximum of 4 trainees (to maximise practical experience).

Enquire online to book or CALL 01423 611030