WHAT ARE MEDICAL SCRUBS?
Medical scrubs refer to sanitary clothing worn by medical practitioners like nurses, doctors, surgeons, physicians, and other workers involved in caring for patients in a hospital. Scrubs were initially made and designed for doctors who would wear them to sterilize themselves before an operation. They are made to look simple, easy to wash, and are very cheap when there is a need for replacement. Scrubs are simply employed for their sterile and lightweight material. In most operating rooms, it is forbidden to wear any other clothing apart from the scrub because they are designed to promote a cleaner environment. The wearing of exposed clothing is thought to carry pathogens. They’re comfortable and designed for long hours of work. They’re more durable compared to past medical clothing. Scrubs are made to be easily washable and resistant to stain.
Scrubs weren’t around till the beginning of the 20th century. Before that time, surgeons didn’t wear any special garments. They wore their regular clothing with a butcher’s apron to protect their cloth from blood spills and stains during operations. Back then, medical personnel operated with their bare hands, non-sterile tools, and crude supplies. Compared to the present, surgical operations were very hectic and tedious and could take several hours. Up to the 20th century, blood-stains on a garment was the sign of a successful surgeon. The importance of a medical scrub is paramount when reducing the transmission of infection.
HOW DO MEDICAL SCRUBS LOOK LIKE?
Medical scrubs consist of upper wear, which is usually short sleeved with a V-neck or round neck and long pants. Scrubs come in different designs and colors depending on the niche of the wearer. Surgical personnel put on scrubs of light green, light blue, or light grey, while non-surgical scrubs come in a wider variety of colors, designs and patterns. Many hospitals around the world use the scrub color to identify the department of a medical worker. Certain departments in a hospital are usually given a specific scrub color to differentiate them from the others.
Medical scrubs aren’t generally owned by the medical practitioner, they’re owned by the hospital. Due to sterility concerns, hospitals’ scrubs are withheld after every operation, and some hospitals have employed disposable scrubs. After medical procedures, the scrubs are disposed of far away from the populace.
Why hospitals promote the wearing of scrubs
1. Easy accessibility: Medical scrubs are made with lots of pocket space for storing essential tools and equipment. Medical professionals can easily access lightweight tools like pens, penlights, scissors, smartphones, and gloves. Instead of running back and forth, all needed tools are already present in their pockets.
2. Promotes identification and professionalism: As said earlier, scrubs aid the identification of personnel. Some hospitals require different colored scrubs to differentiate one medical professional from another. Just like a police officer with his uniform, a scrub gives medical practitioners a professional look. It also provides the wearer with a sense of confidence and respect from peers, coworkers, and patients.
3. Cost friendly and inexpensive: Scrubs are very easy to secure. They come at very low prices.
4. Keeps medical practitioners safe: It’s no news that hospitals are breeding grounds for all sorts of bacteria and viruses. Nurses come in contact with many contaminated surfaces and several patients with contagious diseases, but those worries are eliminated with the help of scrubs. Manufacturers also produce scrubs that can fight potentially harmful bacteria and viruses to shield and protect both the medical professional and the patient.
5. Easy to clean: Scrubs are very easy to clean. They are resistant to high temperatures and don’t absorb stains. Moreover, the type of chemical used to wash scrubs is very strong and could easily restrict regular clothes. Medical scrubs are specially cleaned to remove all contaminants and stains.
Scrubs are very common to a majority of all medical practitioners. It’s more of a uniform that differentiates them not only from their peers but from other workers.