No, Caps Are Not Totally Gone - page 5

by DoGoodThenGo

28,419 Visits | 176 Comments

Nurse proudly wears the cap that defines her profession If you've visited McKay-Dee Hospital, there's good chance you've seen nurse Linda MacPherson. There are a lot of nurses at the hospital in Ogden, though, so what... Read More


  1. 0
    Quote from SaraO'Hara
    Has anybody seen the Caledonian Hospital (Brooklyn, iirc) student uniforms? I have a 1960 National Geographic with a picture - tartan shirtwaist dress, plaid apron, cap that looks like a Glengarry bonnet with plaid trim.

    Cannot help with student's uniform, but here is the cap I think:



  2. 4
    No the caps aren't gone, I know of 3 that wear them at my job.
    HazelLPN, RetRN77, Fiona59, and 1 other like this.
  3. 8
    Lab coats were practical for covering street clothes for doctors looking for their patients.

    Nurse caps were worn by nurses who wanted to be found in a hurry by patients and families who needed the nurse.

    Scrubs mask the fact that hospitals and nursing homes are usually understaffed. Patients and families see many workers and assume there are plenty of nurses until they try to find one. Then they find dietary, housekeeping, physical therapy, lab techs, etc. before they can finally find a nurse.

    How about something more practical that stays on the head better and is machine washable, like white baseball hats. It would help keep hair out of food and sterile trays. It could be worn by both sexes. It would be visible to patients, families, doctors, and other staff who need to find a nurse in a hurry.

    School logos, years of practice, or anything a nurse or hospital wanted could be put on a cap. Nurses need something universal and recognizable to distinguish them from other health care workers. It is important to save our profession which I see is losing ground.
  4. 4
    There was a relatively young nurse on my CV-SICU who wore her cap every day on the unit. Every other nurse on the unit used to call her "(Name) The Hat," and some of the guys abbreviated that to "Hats," as in "Hey, Hats, couldya come gimme a hand turning Three?" Yes, she had graduated within the 21st century. Yes, from an American BSN program. Go figure.

    My mom tells horror stories about her school's hat in the old days. Apparently it was a very sharp-looking hat (wide gray stripe across the bottom, Mercy cross centered on stripe), but it got caught on everything you could possibly find in a patient's room - curtains, IV lines, you name it. She never wore it again after graduation, having managed to land a GN slot in the operating room.

    As for figuring out who's who in the modern era, my hospital recently standardized its dress code such that everyone's role could be easily discerned by their scrub color. RNs wear ciel blue, other licensed professionals (respiratory, radiology, OT/PT, etc) wear royal blue, techs wear hunter green, and ancillary personnel (housekeeping, secretaries, etc) wear burgundy. In sterile units, everyone wears hospital-issue surgical green, plus a warm-up jacket in your professional color (i.e. a perioperative nurse wears ciel over green, a cath-lab radiology tech wears royal over green). We make a point of telling our patients how to identify staff - they feel better being able to know who's a nurse and who isn't, and we feel better that people don't bug the registration clerks for pain meds. :-)
  5. 8
    I attended a diploma program in the mid--80s where we wore our caps every day for clinical (four days/week by our senior year) and was required to wear it in my first job (at the same hospital). Perhaps because we all were so accustomed to wearing the cap (and it wasn't large), I never had a problem with it getting caught on things or falling off. I've ended up going into a specialty where we work in street clothes, but, on the rare occasions when I'm in "whites," I still wear all white (not scrubs) and my cap, proudly. I've gotten only positive responses over the years.
    HazelLPN, RetRN77, nursel56, and 5 others like this.
  6. 5
    I wore my cap all during PN school(required) and then wore it proudly for a couple of years until my daughter spilled koolaid on it, when it was sitting on the table. CAN NOT get koolaid out of a cap!! LOL. I wore my RN cap for awhile, but then decided it was too much trouble. Sigh. gotta say, we looked professional then. Scrubs simply DON"T look as professional. I enjoyed my cap, felt it set us nurses apart and made us instantly reconizeable. I have had patients ask "I want the nurse, you know, the REAL one with the cap on"!!!!!
  7. 2
    Every time one of these threads start up I get the urge to run around and take photos of all the different nurse and student nurse uniforms here in Manila.

    One of these days I'll get my digital camera fixed and do just that.
    RetRN77 and nursel56 like this.
  8. 0
    Quote from murphyle
    There was a relatively young nurse on my CV-SICU who wore her cap every day on the unit. Every other nurse on the unit used to call her "(Name) The Hat," and some of the guys abbreviated that to "Hats," as in "Hey, Hats, couldya come gimme a hand turning Three?" Yes, she had graduated within the 21st century. Yes, from an American BSN program. Go figure.

    My mom tells horror stories about her school's hat in the old days. Apparently it was a very sharp-looking hat (wide gray stripe across the bottom, Mercy cross centered on stripe), but it got caught on everything you could possibly find in a patient's room - curtains, IV lines, you name it. She never wore it again after graduation, having managed to land a GN slot in the operating room.

    As for figuring out who's who in the modern era, my hospital recently standardized its dress code such that everyone's role could be easily discerned by their scrub color. RNs wear ciel blue, other licensed professionals (respiratory, radiology, OT/PT, etc) wear royal blue, techs wear hunter green, and ancillary personnel (housekeeping, secretaries, etc) wear burgundy. In sterile units, everyone wears hospital-issue surgical green, plus a warm-up jacket in your professional color (i.e. a perioperative nurse wears ciel over green, a cath-lab radiology tech wears royal over green). We make a point of telling our patients how to identify staff - they feel better being able to know who's a nurse and who isn't, and we feel better that people don't bug the registration clerks for pain meds. :-)
    Just so people know, in the heyday of caps, before the things started to go the way of the Dodo, *any* female staff in nursing or medical related profession wore them, or could have. Up to and including:Candy StripersDental "Nurses"Vetinerary "Nurses"And anything else that creepth and crawleth upon this earth that was female and "nursing related".What evolved was a vast and dizzingly system of stripes, colours and such that one could never expect a patient to unravel.
  9. 1
    Quote from mds1
    I wore my cap all during PN school(required) and then wore it proudly for a couple of years until my daughter spilled koolaid on it, when it was sitting on the table. CAN NOT get koolaid out of a cap!! LOL. I wore my RN cap for awhile, but then decided it was too much trouble. Sigh. gotta say, we looked professional then. Scrubs simply DON"T look as professional. I enjoyed my cap, felt it set us nurses apart and made us instantly reconizeable. I have had patients ask "I want the nurse, you know, the REAL one with the cap on"!!!!!
    If your cap could be washed, bet the Kool-Aid stains would have come out eventually.
    HazelLPN likes this.
  10. 1
    Recently while in a different city I was looking at the newspaper and came across the obituary of a nurse that had her picture in uniform with cap. I had to read and saw that she had graduated from my program. It was very strange to see a picture of this person wearing the cap that I came so close to earning myself (I did not graduate, but wore the student cap). It made me feel very nostalgic and sad because I missed that cap I never got to wear as a graduate.
    HazelLPN likes this.


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