Dirty Scrubs and Other Disease-Spreading Attire
No open-toed shoes. (This means you Dr. Flip Flop.) "All footwear should have closed toes, low heels, and non-skid soles," say the SHEA guidelines.
6. Wearable Equipment and IDs
Shared equipment, including stethoscopes, should be cleaned between patients, the guidelines say.
One might think that the infection preventionist would have concerns about lanyards carrying hospital identification, tags, cell phones, pagers and jewelry, but the committee said "no guidance can be offered regarding prohibiting" such items. It did say that "those items that come into direct contact with the patient or environment should be disinfected, replaced or eliminated.
The committee report doesn't specifically mention whether men and women should stop wearing rings, including wedding bands, because "we didn't find enough data to step out on that particular limb," Bearman says. But he noted that the United Kingdom prohibits providers there from wearing rings during direct patient care.
Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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