why do nurses have to wear scrubs

One of the biggest transitions most nursing students will make during their nursing program is wearing scrubs in nursing school. Though most of the program s early classes don t require scrubs, students will soon find that they re spending more time outside the classroom and working in clinical environments that teach hands-on, practical skills required by the profession. Most schools have differing timelines on when this will happen, and it s worth noting that the scrubs requirement will vary based on whether students attend a university, community college, or hospital-based program. Before starting the program, consider the key things to know about the program itself, the scrubs uniform, and when it comes into play. Why Do Nursing Schools Have a Scrubs Requirement? From the outside, it might seem like the scrubs requirement is a bit out of place. After all, most nursing students won t actually be working with patients until very late in the program. Why are scrubs required if nursing students will be mostly behind the scenes, learning skills away from the general public? The answer is actually pretty clear: To properly educate future nurses, schools need to fully simulate the nursing environment.


That means students will be given the same tools, technology, and dress code as their certified counterparts early in the program. There is at least one upside to this requirement: Almost all nurses believe that scrubs are actually far more comfortable than even a good pair of jeans. In fact, most students eventually come to associate scrubs day with dress-down day at most nursing schools. Though it s an awkward uniform to transition to at first, it quickly becomes second nature and actually quite comfortable. When Does the Transition Take Place? In community college programs, which are more accelerated and focus on core nursing skills early on, most students will be required to wear scrubs and attend clinical sessions by the time their second semester starts. This is actually very early in comparison to four-year nursing programs, where nurses typically don t need to prepare for a clinical environment until late in their second year of study, or early in their third year of the program. Both groups of students are far behind aspiring nurses who work and learn in a teaching hospital. At hospitals where entire nursing programs are hosted, students typically show up in scrubs on the very first day of their very first semester.


This requirement stays with them throughout the program and follows them directly into their professional practice as a licensed nurse. Does the School Provide Scrubs to its Students? In most cases, schools will not provide scrubs to nursing students. Instead, scrubs are simply viewed as another
that students need to afford on their own. In this way, scrubs are similar to textbooks or other supplies that students in other majors require during their own programs. At hospital programs, however, official scrubs are typically supplied by the program to ensure that nurses-in-training can be easily identified by instructors, fellow professionals, and any patients that students might come into contact with. Nursing school is no easy venture, with long hours and clinical experiences required early in the program. For this reason, nursing school students should view the requirement to wear scrubs in nursing school as a more comfortable way to get through the long days, tough exams, and complex terminology that precedes their licensure as a. In contrast to the uniforms long required of, did not wear any kind of specialized garments until well into the 20th century. procedures were conducted in an.


The surgeon wore his own clothes, with perhaps a butcher's apron to protect his clothing from blood stains, and he operated bare-handed with non- instruments and supplies. (Gut and silk were sold as open strands with reusable hand-threaded needles; packing was made of sweepings from the floors of cotton mills. ) In contrast to today's concept of surgery as a profession that emphasizes cleanliness and conscientiousness, up to the early 20th century the mark of a busy and successful surgeon was the profusion of blood and fluids on his clothes. The importance of dress as a badge of one's class in society was paramount and the processes behind the transmission of infection were the subject of controversy within the profession. With the " " of 1918 and the growing medical interest in 's theory, some surgeons began wearing cotton gauze masks in surgery; however, this was not to protect the patient from intra-operative, but to protect the surgeon from the patient's diseases. Around the same time, operating theatre staff began wearing heavy rubber gloves to protect their hands from the solutions used to clean the room and equipment, a practice surgeons grudgingly adopted.


By the 1940s, advances in surgical antisepsis (now called aseptic technique) and the science of wound infection led to the adoption of antiseptic drapes and gowns for use. Instruments, supplies and dressings were routinely sterilized by exposure to either or. Originally, operating room attire was white to emphasize cleanliness. However, the combination of bright operating lights and an all-white environment led to eye strain for the surgeon and staff. By the 1950s and 1960s, most hospitals had abandoned white operating room apparel in favor of various shades of green, which provided a high-contrast environment, reduced eye fatigue, and made bright red blood splashes less conspicuous. [ By the 1970s, surgical attire had largely reached its modern statea short-sleeve V-necked shirt and drawstring pants or a short-sleeve calf-length dress, made of green cotton or cotton/ blend. Over this was worn a tie-back or bouffant-style cloth cap, a gauze or synthetic textile mask, a cloth or synthetic surgical gown, latex gloves, and supportive closed-toe shoes. This uniform was originally known as "surgical greens" because of its color, but came to be called "scrubs" because it was worn in a "scrubbed" environment.

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