Score one for standardized scrub colors - page 2

by MN-Nurse

5,599 Views | 41 Comments

A year ago, I went to an Urgent Care clinic that my employer had just acquired. The treatment was OK, but I was disappointed to see Medical Assistants calling themselves "Nurses" and being referred to as such by coworkers - a... Read More


  1. 0
    Sparrow Hospital in Lansing now does this. The information below was taken from their hospital website:

    Starting this month, Sparrow will begin a
    systemwide switch to a standard uniform
    dress code policy that means Caregivers
    in the same grouping will all wear the
    same color scrubs. A revised professional
    appearance policy has been approved and
    will be introduced in September.
    The switch to standard uniform color
    scrubs will:
    [COLOR=#006f51][COLOR=#006f51]
    [/COLOR]
    [/COLOR]
    Allow patients and visitors to easily
    distinguish nurses, PCT’s and other
    Caregivers at just a glance
    [COLOR=#006f51][COLOR=#006f51]
    [/COLOR]
    [/COLOR]
    Improve safety and quality by allowing
    physicians and other staff to quickly
    recognize personnel.
    [COLOR=#006f51][COLOR=#006f51]
    [/COLOR]
    [/COLOR]
    Improve patient satisfaction by
    addressing patient care problems more
    quickly because of ease of Caregiver
    identification.
    By making this change Sparrow joins
    hospitals nationwide that have switched
    to standard color uniforms in an effort
    to improve patient satisfaction, such as
    the Cleveland Clinic and University of
    Michigan Health System.
    The switch will save Caregivers money
    by initially providing free scrubs or
    reimbursing costs. Soon, Caregivers will
    have a quick and easy online ordering
    system. The online ordering system
    will benefit Caregivers with a 24/7/365
    availability of discounted scrubs and
    hassle-free payroll deduction.
    A team of Caregivers, MNA leaders, and
    UAW representatives worked together
    to recommend uniform colors. That team
    chose to create eight color uniform
    groupings to minimize patient confusion.
  2. 3
    Quote from wooh
    But how do you know who the MD is if they aren't wearing something color coded?
    Because, unlike the previous situation where MAs were calling themselves "nurses," this particular MD said, "Hello, I am Dr. Pierce."
  3. 2
    I get where the OP is coming from, but I agree with the sentiment that 99% of the general public couldn't care less if the person checking vitals or giving a shot in a clinic is a RN, LPN or MA.

    Right or wrong, people just don't care.
    workingharder and hiddencatRN like this.
  4. 3
    Quote from MN-Nurse
    Because, unlike the previous situation where MAs were calling themselves "nurses," this particular MD said, "Hello, I am Dr. Pierce."
    But how do you know this "Dr. Pierce" was really a physician. Could have been another MA misrepresenting themself if this so-called "physician" wasn't in color coded attire.
  5. 0
    I hate the rigidity of this practice. I think people should simply wear appropriate scrubs or uniform description and THEIR BADGES. I also think a professional use of ID, such as having labcoats or whatever embroidered with names and titles on them is good too. But you still have to wear the name tag in a way such that people can see and know with whom it is that they are dealing.

    I'm an individualist though, and I'm sorry. Certain grays, greens, teals, and purples etc, just look like crap on certain people. So when other units, floors, or areas get the first picks, that leaves the other areas limited with color choices. It's ridiculous to me, unless of course the hospital wants to pay for them. lol
    If I'm shelling out the bucks, listen, as long as it falls within professional guidelines, let me wear what works for me.

    Anyway, professionalism requires the use of a name tag with a title in this field, for heaven's sake. I say nurses should stop worrying about wackadoodle patients and families coming after them, b/c if a person really wants to get your name and information, they will easily find a way to do so. Just wear the damn name tag and let it go.

    Places like the OR, however, are the exceptions, b/c of field sterility and other concerns. But outside of certain areas, people should have on them clear identification.

    What's next? Forehead tatoos with our names and tiles on them? Sorry. Your uniform color does really help me.

    If the state troopers wear their names and titles conspicuously, and they just do it, why in the world can't nurses?

    Maybe people can be forced to color their hair a certain color for the particular area in which they are working. LOL

    Wearing the badge. . .it preserves some stylistic liberty, and it gives the necessary information patients and families really want to know. . .Like who are you and what is your role in the care of my loved one or me as a patient?

    If someone asks about those people that can't read, all I can say is, well, what about those that are color blind?
    Last edit by samadams8 on Mar 18, '13 : Reason: word removal
  6. 4
    When I had my children, I never knew who the nurses were unless I happened to catch a glimpse of their nametag.

    Where I work now, we have color coded scrubs. Trust me, the patients notice. They know exactly who the nurses are and who the aides are. They might not know right when they come in, but they catch on quickly.
    SoldierNurse22, psu_213, Violach, and 1 other like this.
  7. 1
    I guess it depends a lot on the population you work with. I continue to introduce myself and my role upon entering a patient's room, as do my colleagues, and we are all still constantly called the wrong thing by patients and I still get questions about "the other nurse" who was in to see them who was actually the CNA, respiratory therapist, unit secretary, housekeeping....
    Violach likes this.
  8. 0
    I like the idea. It minimizes confusion and posers, and makes choosing what to wear to work very simple.
  9. 0
    I have worked so hard for my degree and sacrificed financially and time entailed with CE. It drives me crazy when I hear a MA or STNA tell people that they are nurses. I appreciate all roles but call it like it is. I like the standardized uniforms for the reason you stated as well as it's easy to get ready.
  10. 1
    I did my community health clinical @ a facility where medical assistants, LPNs and RNs alike were collectively referred to as nurses. I asked the acting director of nursing about this once and he said it fosters teamwork and avoids inferiority. I still think licensed nurses should be identified as such.
    hiddencatRN likes this.


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