Uniform at work

The appropriate use of personal protective equipment (PPE) will protect staff uniform from contamination in most circumstances. Healthcare facilities should provide changing rooms/areas where staff can change into uniforms on arrival at work.

Organisations may consider the use of theatre scrubs for staff who do not usually wear a uniform but who are likely to come into close contact with patients e.g. medical staff.

Healthcare laundry services should be used to launder staff uniforms. If there is no laundry facility available, then uniforms should be transported home in a disposable plastic bag. This bag should be disposed of into the household waste stream. Uniforms should be laundered:

  • separately from other household linen;
  • in a load not more than half the machine capacity;
  • at the maximum temperature the fabric can tolerate, then ironed or tumbled-dried.

NB. It is best practice to change into and out of uniforms at work and not wear them when travelling; this is based on public perception rather than evidence of an infection risk. This does not apply to community health workers who are required to travel between patients in the same uniform.