How to wash scrubs at home after caring for MRSA pt?

  1. 0
    I wonder about MRSA becoming so common nowadays that isolation seems to be found in many floor of hospital or health facilities.
    My concerns are as nurses or healthcare provider with direct contact with those with MRSA, how should we wash our scrubs at home (despite the fact we wear gowns and gloves, and wash hands, I still dont not like wearing them off worksite and bring them home to wash)? So any input on how to deal with this?
    Thank you.

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  2. 6 Comments...

  3. 0
    What I do is... after I wear my scrubs I put them in a plastic bag and leave them in the garage. When I have three pairs (usually a weeks worth of scrubs) I wash them together with a capful of bleach. Then I wash the washing machine (with two cups of bleach, 2tbs of detergent, and hot water) to get rid of anything left in the washing machine.

    Never thought about the bacteria transferring to the dryer, but you can also hang them on hangers to dry or on a clothesline (which would be the best).
  4. 1
    Bleach does kill MRSA, but so does heat. So, laundering with bleach is good but drying in the dryer is also necessary.
    As far as I know, this is the best method of killing MRSA and other microbes on your uniforms.
    muffin7 likes this.
  5. 2
    on my last rotation every patient i had either had cdiff, mrsa, or vre or some combination of the three. i peeled off the clothes in the restroom and put them in a plastic bag, wiped my shoes down with the purple topped wipes put on different clothes, washed my hands and lower arms really well, throwing the bag in the trunk. luckily mine is white so i threw them in the washer with a cup of bleach right after i came home. then in the dryer they went. i've never cleaned the washer afterwards. i made it through without anyone in my family coming down with anything.
    mynnurse and scarcity21 like this.
  6. 0
    Quote from cursedandblessed
    on my last rotation every patient i had either had cdiff, mrsa, or vre or some combination of the three. i peeled off the clothes in the restroom and put them in a plastic bag, wiped my shoes down with the purple topped wipes put on different clothes, washed my hands and lower arms really well, throwing the bag in the trunk. luckily mine is white so i threw them in the washer with a cup of bleach right after i came home. then in the dryer they went. i've never cleaned the washer afterwards. i made it through without anyone in my family coming down with anything.
    the above post makes me even more respectful of bedside nurses. our hais are out of control and increasing all the time. i don't work in nursing anymore except with my mrsa prevention and advocacy, but my work doesn't even compare to what dedicated bedside nurses face every day.

    i am now working with the maine quality forum infection control collaborative in the capacity of a consumer. without nursing knowlege and the experience that i have had with my own fathers terminal hai, mrsa pneumonia, a consumer would be facing an inpenetrable wall. i thought i was fighting mrsa but i am fighting infection preventoinists.
    the small part of my maine bill, ld 1038, that passed, high risk screening, was passed with the intent and also the impression of the health and human services committee that high risk screening on admission would be done. the majority, but not all of the maine quality forum group are infection control nurses and one epidemiologist. all but a very few are fighting against this screening and reporting. i never dreamed i would meet such opposition. and this is with full knowlege that a 15 year campaign for handwashing and other attempts at prevention have failed.
    making hospital accountable for these infections was part of my proposal in ld 1038. so, some on this committe have as usual...put all the blame on bedside nurses. one hospital has gone as far as assigning the cleaning people to report doctors and nurses for not washing their hands. until everybody in that hospital has had the same standardized education about handwashing and other preventative steps, nobody should be assigned handwashing police duties. it is just another way to put bedside nurses down. doctors don't care if they get reported because of their percieved status. it's the same old culture as in the 1960s when i trained as a nurse.
    so, instead of accepting that their prevention policies are in large part a failure and trying to move on to something that has been proven effective, hospitals will balk and cry foul and blame bedside nurses for the problem.
    the goal of everybody concerned needs to be mrsa and other hai prevention/control. in a perfect world everybody would have a private room. perhaps every room would have gowns for any physical contact with the patients. maybe we could give the patients and their families a "hospital survival kit" with alcohol hand sanitizer for the patients and some disinfection wipes to clean the things closest to the patient. we could involve the families with some light cleaning since we cannot assign a cleaning person to each patient. all of these things would have sounded ridiculous to me even 10 years ago, but not anymore.
    so, bedside nurses, keep up the good work and maybe someday your administrations and infection control people will actually start preventing these infecitons instead of reacting to them.
  7. 1
    This kind of question suddenly makes clear why wearing white makes sense for nurses. Keep in mind that, when we talk about washing with "bleach," we're talking only about Clorox-type, traditional bleach. The various "color-safe" bleach products don't kill microbes.
    LorelieRN likes this.
  8. 0
    When I worked at a major County hospital in Los Angeles, I was amazed at the stupidity of a couple of the surgeons. I worked specifically in OR.

    We had one surgeon, who after doing a major I&D on a patient (3rd time) with MRSA (at 3am) came out of the OR soaked in blood from the knees down to her shoes. Tracking blood everywhere. I guess she felt she was safe because she had on knee high booties, obviously, she couldn't care about anyone else.

    A Neurosurgery Resident brought up a patient with ORSA. He was taking the bandage off of the patients wound, no gloves. Then touching everything else after that with dirty hands. The next night, he brought up a patient right out of Neuro ICU with bacterial meningitis and did not tell anyone in the OR about the Meningitis. I found out when Anesthesia and I went took the patient to ICU only to find out that the patient was in isolation.

    I reported him immediately, don't know what happened because I resigned. I was so fed up with being put in these unsafe situations, God forbid, I bring a major infection home to my family.


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