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Should Nurses Wear Scrubs in Public?

  • June 01, 2018
  • Professionalism
  • Crown Healthcare
should nurses wear scrubs in public

The debate over whether or not scrubs should be worn in public has been going on for quite some time. Nurses have been scrutinized by the public and medical professionals have been battling it out to be able to wear their scrubs when/where they want.

But where does this put you as you run your own medical facility and watch your nurses walk out still in uniform, or as you begin your medical practice and are trying to decide where you should draw the line when it comes to wearing scrubs in public?

As a key decision maker for your facility, it is essential to understand both the pros and cons of allowing your nurses to walk out in scrubs. So, should nurses wear scrubs in public?

Why Individuals Willingly Wear Scrubs in Public

nurse wearing scrubs outside

The main pro of giving nurses the freedom to leave in their uniforms is exactly that – freedom. Many of your nurses are probably not just nurses – in other words, just like in any other field, they probably have many other responsibilities outside of work. And because of that, combined with long work hours, they are incredibly busy individuals. The idea of having to pick out a change of clothes before work and then having to postpone going home or running errands to change out of their scrubs may be a daunting thought.

So Then, What’s the Big Deal?

group of nurses in scrubs

If changing in and out of uniforms is such an inconvenience, you may be wondering why it matters. Why not just give them what they want?

While having the freedom to wear uniforms outside of the workspace is a huge convenience, wearing scrubs outside of the medical space poses the possibility of health issues both to the public AND to your patients.

In this study, out of a total of 11 scrub tops, 7 had MRSA present on them at the end of the work shift. As you probably already know from working in the medical field, MRSA is a serious problem as it can cause antibiotic-resistant infections. Why risk letting this bacteria and other potential health hazards out of your medical space? It’s dangerous to the health of your employees, their families and anyone who comes in contact with scrub tops.

Not only is the problem what your nurses are bringing out of the medical facility, but even more worrisome is what your employees may be bringing IN.

If their scrub tops are carrying bacteria such as MRSA, should your employees really be laundering their own uniforms? No two nurses are going to have the same exact at-home laundering method and you don’t have very much control over how their clothing is laundered, or if it even gets laundered at all. Scrubs need to be laundered at a hot enough temperature to kill the bacteria and should not be washed with other standard clothing.

Don’t take this risk with public safety and the safety of your patients. Don’t let your nurses wear their scrubs in public. Work with a professional medical rental and laundry company that understands the strict needs of the medical industry. Contact us at Crown Healthcare Laundry today at 844-383-7500 to learn more about what we do and how we can help make your facility safer!

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