how many of you go to the grocery store after working with patients?

  1. I noticed the thread that asked about showering after you came home from work....I saw a high percentage of you mention that you didn't want to bring germs/cruddy things into the home.

    Then how can there be so many people with scrubs (sometimes name badges), that can go into a grocery store and into the produce section and lean over the fruit/vegetables, handle some until finding the perfect piece?

    I have asked this before- it just doesn't make sense to me. And before someone gets on their high-horse, I am aware that some of these people may be on their way TO work. Even if you are a station clerk, you are exposed to dirty crud. A worker in a doc's office also.

    I see so many people in scrubs at the produce section... Maybe it doesn't bother you, but I feel they are not being conscientious.
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    About ilmbg

    Joined: Sep '07; Posts: 140; Likes: 68

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  3. by   Dolce
    I don't shop after work as a general rule because I am exhausted!!! As far as the produces section, I view that as already being completely dirty anyway. I really clean my produce well after I get it home from the store. I think that most nurses who really get gross things on them will change at work. There are hospital scrubs to wear if you have been thrown up on or have had blood splattered on you. Also, it is important to realize that healthcare workers don't have exclusive rights to the dirtiest job. Teachers are exposed to very germy kids all day long. These kids have been sneezing, coughing, blowing their nose, etc.

    I think each person needs to use their own discretion.
  4. by   miko014
    Quote from Dolce
    I don't shop after work as a general rule because I am exhausted!!! As far as the produces section, I view that as already being completely dirty anyway. I really clean my produce well after I get it home from the store. I think that most nurses who really get gross things on them will change at work. There are hospital scrubs to wear if you have been thrown up on or have had blood splattered on you. Also, it is important to realize that healthcare workers don't have exclusive rights to the dirtiest job. Teachers are exposed to very germy kids all day long. These kids have been sneezing, coughing, blowing their nose, etc.

    I think each person needs to use their own discretion.
    I agree - I would never go anywhere if I had something nasty on me, and I wash my hand thoroughly before I leave work. I also wash all of my produce and such very thoroughly before using it - whether healthcare workers touched it or not, it's already covered with who knows what kind of crud. Think about the salmonella outbreaks and such that start with spinich or something. Do you think a healthcare worker caused that?? Also, not only are hcws not the only ones with dirty jobs, we're not the only ones who wear scrubs. Vet techs wear them, dental hygienists wear them, heck some crazy people just wear them because they like them!
  5. by   GadgetRN71
    Count me in as one of the germy. IMO, germs are out there anyway. Do you know how many people there are out in the community that have MRSA? These people are using the same gyms as you, using the same salad bars as you and may very well be cooking and/or serving your food.

    I would trust the healthcare worker in scrubs over your average "civilian" any day because healthcare workers for the most part know the importance of handwashing. I worked in a cafe long ago and while using the bathroom,I would see some of our patrons come in, use the toilet and then leave without washing their hands. They then would pick up their blueberry muffin and eat it with their poopy hands.

    I have to admit, I find it silly, this hysteria over seeing people in scrubs out in public. If people took this energy they have worrying over "scrubs in public" and focused that on flu shot compliance and handwashing compliance, we'd all be better off. Just my 2 cents.
  6. by   NeoNurseTX
    I'll go.. Im no more nasty than the elementary school kid hacking up a lung and touching everything.
  7. by   Virgo_RN
    Quote from redefinition
    I'll go.. Im no more nasty than the elementary school kid hacking up a lung and touching everything.
    Exactly. At least I wash my hands after every patient contact and use appropriate PPE whenever I'm in the room with someone who is actually or potentially infectious. I'm probably a lot cleaner than the general public, when I think about it.

    I mean come on, I've seen what's under that pannus, and I know darn well those fingernails have probably NOT been scrubbed after scratching under there, and I've noticed how vigilant patients are (not) about personal hygeine, and they ARE the general public. What about those people who pick their nose while driving their car? Where do you suppose they're going with those nasty fingers, and do you think they're going to be washing their hands before handling those tomatoes?
    Last edit by Virgo_RN on Nov 4, '08
  8. by   TheCommuter
    ATM machines have been proven to be infested with germs. Fuel pumps at gas stations are also very infested with germs because everyone has touched them with their filthy hands. Door handles are nasty, and so forth. Everything and anything in public has germs.

    Most microorganisms do not live very long outside the body, and I have worn scrubs to the store after work without shame. I also wash my scrubs with my regular clothing because 30 minutes of exposure to high heat from the clothes dryer will destroy most germs.
    Last edit by TheCommuter on Nov 4, '08 : Reason: added thoughts
  9. by   ShayRN
    I guess I am guilty of this, but this is how I think of it. How many people go to the grocery store after visiting patients? How many moms change diapers and don't wash their hands, THEN go to the grocery store? Ever go to the zoo then stop for food?
  10. by   Xbox Live Addict
    Quote from TheCommuter
    ATM machines have been proven to be infested with germs. Fuel pumps at gas stations are also very infested with germs because everyone has touched them with their filthy hands. Door handles are nasty, and so forth. Everything and anything in public has germs.

    Most microorganisms do not live very long outside the body, and I have worn scrubs to the store after work without shame. I also wash my scrubs with my regular clothing because 30 minutes of exposure to high heat from the clothes dryer will destroy most germs.
    I go around running errands in work scrubs all the time, along with countless others. I'm too bloody tired to go home, change clothes, then go to the store. Once I'm home, I'm finished for the day, and I want to park myself in front of my HDTV and fire up my you-know-what (see my username) for some stress relief. Ditto if I want to stop on the way and get something to eat or drink. Should I not handle one of 7-Eleven's soda fountains? What about hospital cafeterias or snack machines, which are frequented by the same patients from which we are obstensibly contracting these pathogens from?

    There's plenty of lay people with horrible personal hygiene habits shopping at the store that are probably more likely to put people at risk than we are (and like Commuter said, pathogens don't live outside the body for long, so any risk is miniscule - this isn't Captain Trips, ya know.) And what about toilet seats, where dozens of people may park their naked bee-hinds over the course of a single day?

    It's not like I'm walking into stores with clothes stained with blood or bodily secretions. Were that to happen, then yes, I would change out of them - and would probably have changed out of them while still at work, immediately after they got splashed with whatever nasty body fluid.
  11. by   Xbox Live Addict
    Quote from miko014
    I agree - I would never go anywhere if I had something nasty on me, and I wash my hand thoroughly before I leave work. I also wash all of my produce and such very thoroughly before using it - whether healthcare workers touched it or not, it's already covered with who knows what kind of crud. Think about the salmonella outbreaks and such that start with spinich or something. Do you think a healthcare worker caused that?? Also, not only are hcws not the only ones with dirty jobs, we're not the only ones who wear scrubs. Vet techs wear them, dental hygienists wear them, heck some crazy people just wear them because they like them!
    Or they wear them because that's what they were issued at the local psychiatric hospital...

    Anyway, there are plenty of lay people who are just plain lacking in basic hygiene skills, who don't bathe regularly, wash their hands after using the toilet, are carrying God knows what kind of nasty infections, etc, handling that same produce. If I've learned one thing from health care, it's how incredibly nasty and repulsive people of both sexes can be when they are not using "company manners." At least we're washing our hands regularly, or should be.
  12. by   Elektra6
    Ha Ha my one homecare patient wants me to wear regular clothes, so you never know who we are and where we've been! LOL.

    Seriously, I usually don't, but I did go to a diner at midnight once with a bunch of co-workers.
  13. by   Pudnluv
    I'm guilty also of going to the store after work. Many times I stop in to pick up something for dinner later that night. I don't want to wake up (I work nights) and have to go running to store for something I could've gotten earlier. I also stop at the bank and do a few errands if I can. If I stop home first, I'll just want to stay there and jump in bed.
  14. by   Eirene
    [FONT=Franklin Gothic Medium]I go to the grocery store after work. And I don't feel guilty about it. I wash my hands thoroughly before leaving work (like everyone else).
    [FONT=Franklin Gothic Medium]
    [FONT=Franklin Gothic Medium]Before I was in healthcare, I didn't think twice about people wearing scrubs in the grocery.

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