What nurses wear in patient care settings is a long and hotly debated subject. Years ago we all wore white uniforms and shoes and the females – caps. We stood out and were easily identifiable as nurses. Then the trend became to wear scrubs and nurses faded into a generic sea of healthcare workers, indistinguishable in many cases from techs, aides, physician residents, therapists, housekeeping staff, unit secretaries, etc.
Once scrubs became the norm, we started to get “creative” with various patterns, sports team logos, cartoon characters, hearts and logos, etc. With or without the patterns, it remained hard for patients and visitors and even some staff members to know who’s who. The name badges we wear are often covered with sweaters or lab coats or flipped over so our name, credentials and title are obscured.
Many hospitals have gone to color-coded scrubs so that both patients and staff can tell who’s who. Read about one such hospital that instituted this change www.daytondailynews.com
My husband was recently hospitalized and the facility he was in used this system. I can’t tell you how great it was to know who the nurses were at a glance and to be able to immediately identify who walked into the room or know who to flag down in the hall when we needed something. It’s an idea whose time has come.