Resuscitation bag and mask

There are many factors to consider when purchasing new equipment. Thinking about how easy or difficult it will be to comply with provincial standards for cleaning, disinfection or sterilization before purchasing each item will save time, trouble and money in the long run.




What are the cleaning requirements?
  • Most manufacturers (e.g. Laerdal) and PIDAC guidance recommend sterilization.
  • All of the components of the Laerdal self-inflating bag and mask setup can be steam autoclaved except the oxygen reservoir.


Can I clean it?
  • If the practice group does not reprocess equipment onsite or have access to outsourcing, the bag and mask cannot be cleaned.
  • Practice groups that reprocess instruments and equipment onsite will not have access to the non-steam processes required to sterilize the oxygen reservoir.
  • If the practice outsources reprocessing, check to ensure that a non-steam sterilization process is an option for the oxygen reservoir.


Are there better or easier to clean alternatives?
  • Self-inflating bags with detachable oxygen reservoirs allow for the autoclaving of all other parts, with only the oxygen reservoir treated as a single-use item.
  • Consider replacement costs, environmental impact and efficiency.


What is the IPAC plan for this item?

  • Disposable bag and mask sets are an option for everyone.
  • Reusable bag and mask sets are an option for practices that autoclave, but the oxygen reservoir must be treated as single-use.
  • Reprocessing the entire set, including the oxygen reservoir, may be an option for some practices that outsource their reprocessing.


There are no substantial differences between resuscitation bag and mask brands. Each practice group should consider its own unique needs and circumstances when making purchasing decisions.


For general considerations and links to other equipment, see the AOM’s Equipment Purchasing Guide.