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Quick Tactics to Deal with Soiled Scrubs

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Here’s the scenario: You are in the middle of your shift, or worse yet, you just started, and you have one of those moments: Your pen leaked all over your pocket. Or, say, your fresh nursing scrubs have been splattered with (use your imagination here, we have lots of options)!

Your pager just went off or a call bell is ringing and you don’t have any time to wash and dry your scrubs uniform so what do you do?

Below are 5 tactics to help you manage when your nursing scrubs getting soiled:

1. The hospital’s inventory may be an option. “I know our charge nurses have a bunch of leftover t-shirts (used for free giveaways) that they keep on hand for when our nursing scrubs get soiled,” says nurse L. Holder, who works at Children’s Hospital of Central California. “So we actually get a free T-shirt out of it!”

2. Keep extra scrub pants and a scrub top in your car and in your locker. “A change of scrubs can be a life-saver when an unfortunate accident happens” says nurse Holder. “I have personally been caught one too many times with my ‘pants soiled,’ if you know what I mean – hence the pair of extra medical scrubs I have in my locker at all times”.

3. Ask the Operating Room. “Some hospitals understand this situation so they will let you borrow some surgical scrubs from the OR if you’re in a pinch,” says Holder.

4. Use cartoon stickers as a cover for small accidents. Holder admits this is one of her favorite solutions! You can also cover up a small mishap on your scrubs with a nametag or name badge.

  1. When all else fails, smile and tell a good story. For larger stains, you may just have to use a spare lab coat and wear it over your nursing scrubs. And if you cant do that? “When there just isn’t another option, you have to deal with it. Just give a big smile and tell the story about how you got your badge of honor,” says Holder.




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