Some countries have banned the white coat in an attempt to reduce bacterial transmissions. In this trial, 100 residents and hospitalists were randomized to wearing a traditional long sleeved white coat, or a short sleeved laundered uniform, and garment bacterial colony count was measured in both groups after an 8 hour shift. Although bacterial counts were lowert a the start of the shift in the uniform group, the bacterial colony count was the same between groups at the end of the shift. Laundered short sleeve uniforms do not appear to be a good solution to reduce nosocomial bacterial spread (abstract)
Dr. Scheurer is a clinical hospitalist and the Medical Director of Quality and Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and is Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, completed her residency at Duke University, and completed her Masters in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. She also serves as the Web Editor and Physician Advisor for the Society of Hospital Medicine.