Document Sample

    Page 1 of 11
                                    UNIFORM POLICY

Policy Reference: Chs/PRG/10/33/02                                         Version: 02

                      Approval                                           Distribution
Policy        BPCHS Clinical                             Intranet             PCT Website
Review        Governance and
Group         Risk
15.1.10       25.1.10                                    9.2.10                9.2.10

Purpose                                   To outline clear standards by which the Organisation
                                          and staff members may uphold our professional image
                                          across Bournemouth & Poole Community Health

Policy Application                        Directors and Heads of Service

Author and Directorate                    Clinical Governance Manager, BPCHS.

Approving Committee                       Clinical Governance & Risk Management Committee,

Issue Date                                December 2009

Date of Next Review                       December 2011

This Policy has been assessed using the   December 2009
Equality Impact Assessment Tool as
required by the Race Relations
(Amendment) Act 2000

Responsibility for implementation         Chief Operating Officer, Deputy Directors and Heads of

Policy Statement
                                          It is the responsibility of staff at all levels to ensure that
                                          they are working to the most up to date and relevant
                                          policies and procedures. By so doing, the quality of
                                          services offered will be maintained and the chances of
                                          staff making erroneous decisions, which may affect
                                          patient, staff or visitor safety, will be reduced.

                                                                                  Page 2 of 11

Section                                                    Page

1            Introduction                                  5

2            Purpose & Scope                               5

3            Duties and Responsibilities                   5

4            Safeguarding                                  6

5            Uniform & Dress Code – Key principles         6

6            Health & Safety                               8

7            Infection Control                             8

8            Implementation and monitoring                 9

9            References                                    9


Appendix 1   Equality Impact Assessment Form               10

                                                     Page 3 of 11

1.1   An important aspect of providing health care is the confidence service users have in
      our ability to deliver services in a professional manner. It is recognised staff are an
      influencing factor in maintaining confidence. This policy aims to outline clear
      standards for the Organisation and the collective and individual responsibility we
      have to uphold our professional image across Bournemouth & Poole Community
      Health Services.

1.2   Uniform and dress also form an integral part of risk controls. This policy forms good
      practice guidelines to ensure legal compliance with the Health and Safety at Work
      Act 1974.


2.1   To maintain a professional image, standards of dress at work apply to all staff who
      have contact with service users. If a uniform is not required staff must wear clothes
      suitable for the type of environment and activities they are expected to undertake to
      enable moving & handling and safety.

      Failure to comply with the above may result in disciplinary proceedings.


3.1   The Chief Operating Officer assumes overall responsibility for the Uniform Policy and
      Dress Code across the Organisation.

3.2   Deputy Directors and Heads of Service are responsible for its implementation across
      their services.

3.3   The Clinical Governance Manager will monitor the effectiveness of the policy through
      the annual audit process and policy review cycle.

3.4   Line managers have responsibility to ensure:

      •      adequate uniforms are ordered, according to individual role and number of
             hours worked.

      •      provide replacement uniforms, as required.

      •      the policy can be accessed and Uniform Policy and Dress Code standards
             are adhered to at local level.

3.5   Individuals have a responsibility to ensure:

      (includes temporary, apprenticeship, secondment, students, volunteers and work

      •      they take personal responsibility for their professional appearance.

      •      allocated uniforms are laundered daily, remain in good condition and are
             worn in full.

                                                                                 Page 4 of 11
      •       requests for uniform replacements are made in a timely manner.

      •       Trust-supplied uniforms are laundered and returned to their line manager
              upon leaving the Organisation.

      •       their line manager is made aware of any religious requirements relating to
              modesty, culture or personal needs that require a uniform or dress code
              adjustment or exemption, for example pregnancy, disablement and, or

      Where uniforms are externally provided (pre-registration students and agency staff)
      the principles of this policy will be adhered to.


4.1   All staff who work directly or come into contact with children, young people and
      vulnerable adults should ensure that safeguarding and promoting their welfare forms
      an integral part of the care they offer.
4.2   Safeguarding training is mandatory for all staff and will be included at Corporate
      Induction and if required, an additional level commensurate with a role and its
      responsibilities. This is identified and discussed with the Line Manager and
      mandatory updates scheduled within the annual Personal Development Review

4.2   The following Trust Policies are available for further reading:

          •   Adult Protection Policy, 2008

          •   Safeguarding Children Policy, 2008


      (includes all temporary, permanent,          apprenticeship,      secondment,   students,
      volunteers and work placement staff)


          •   Allocated uniform must be worn in full and be covered for the journey to and
              from the workplace and, or between patients.

          •   Footwear must be comfortable and non-slip, enclosing the whole foot
              (including toes and heels) and be supportive of the foot. Permitted colours are
              plain black or navy with a sensible heel of approximately 2.5cms (1”). Lace-
              up shoes are strongly recommended. The wearing of open-toed shoes, slip-
              on shoes, sandals or aerated plastic shoes, i.e. ‘croc’ type shoes are not
              permitted. Trainers are permitted for physiotherapy, occupational therapy and
              podiatry staff. All footwear must be easily cleaned.

          •   Tights must be plain black, navy or natural.

          •   Socks must be plain black or navy.

                                                                                 Page 5 of 11
       •    Cardigans, pullovers and, or professional fleeces may be worn but must be
            removed when attending to patients.

       •    Identification badge must be worn and remain visible but may be removed
            when providing clinical care to prevent accidental injury. If illegible or
            damaged, replacements are requested via your line manager. In addition, a
            maximum of two professional badges may be worn.

       •    Headwear is not permitted. Please refer to Section 3.5 (request for uniform or
            dress code exemption).

    Personal grooming

        •   Scents and deodorants must not be over-powering and make-up minimal and
            natural looking.

        •   Hair should be neat and tidy. Long hair must secured off the face for
            delivering clinical care or treatment.

        •   Facial hair should be clean, short and neatly trimmed. Please refer to Section
            3.4 and 3.5 (request for uniform or dress code exemption).

        •   Nails must be short and clean. Nail varnish and false nails extensions are not
            permitted in any circumstances.


        •   One plain metal band ring is permitted on a finger and one pair of ear studs or
            small sleepers (one per ear). No other visible body jewellery is permitted.

        •   All visible piercings must be removed whilst on duty, other than earrings (as

        •   Tattoos should be covered, where possible, with particular consideration to
            facial or neck tattoos.

        •   Wristwatches must not be worn when carrying out patient care.


•   Staff must change out of uniform promptly at the end of each shift, where possible.

•   The wearing of uniforms is to be avoided in commercial, recreational or retail
    premises other than within the course of daily duties. For example, community
    nurses filling-up their vehicle with fuel or collecting prescriptions for patients are

The routine wearing of uniform in public places poses a risk of infection. This can cloud
public perception that infection control measures are compromised, resulting in an
increase in complaints and reduced patient confidence across Community Health

                                                                                  Page 6 of 11
     Non-uniformed staff

     •   Wear appropriate clothing commensurate to your role. This must be smart, safe and

6.       HEALTH & SAFETY

         Organisational requirements

         Health care organisations must assist staff to comply with good practice for the
         wearing of uniform.

         Legal requirements

         The Health and Safety at Work Act (1974) outlines the general duty of employers to
         protect staff at work and implement safe systems of work, while the Management of
         Health and Safety at Work Regulations (1999) require employers to carry out risk
         assessments. These duties extend to the type of uniform worn and, or if a uniform is

         Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations (1992) are defined by the Health
         and Safety Executive as ‘...all equipment (including clothing affording protection
         against the weather) which is intended to be worn or held by a person at work and
         which protects him against one or more risks to his health or safety’ (HSE INDG174
         (rev1), 2005). The PPE definition does not extend to general uniforms but does
         include specific work wear items designed to protect a user against a specific health
         risk. For this reason aprons, gloves, and goggles or visors, may be considered to be
         PPE items.

         Manual Handling Operations Regulations (1992) guidance states that clothing should
         form a part of an assessment process. Work clothing should be well-fitting and
         restrict movement as little as possible.


         The Health and Social Care Act (2008) contains a code of practice on the prevention
         and control of healthcare associated infections. Under compliance criterion 2,
         Organisations are expected to minimise the risk of health care associated infections.
         The wearing of uniform and, or work wear for carrying out duties, must be clean and
         fit for purpose. Organisations are also required to ensure good hand hygiene
         practices; for example, by keeping the hands, wrists and lower arms free from

         Key principles

         Laundry facilities are not provided within Community Health Services. Under section
         201 of the Income and Corporation Taxes Act (1988), individuals may apply for tax
         relief towards the costs of uniform cleaning. Contact you local Inland Revenue Office
         for more information.

     •   Uniform laundering is required on a daily basis and a clean uniform should be worn
         for each shift to reduce risk of cross infection.

                                                                                  Page 7 of 11
     •   Uniform is to be washed according to manufacturers recommendations. However the
         uses of modern washing detergents enable many organisms to be removed from
         fabrics at lower temperatures. When uniforms are adequately dried, a hot iron and
         separate uniform storage is recommended.

     •   Clean and dirty uniforms must not be transported together to or from work.


         The correct wearing of uniform is an integral part of the terms and conditions of
         employment of all staff and is in accordance with national NHS Terms and Conditions
         of Service and Trust policies and procedures. All staff assume personal responsibility
         for compliance with this policy and any variance will be managed and monitored by
         respective line managers.


         Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

         Department of Health (2009). The Health and Social Care Act 2008: Code of practice
         for the NHS on the prevention and control of healthcare associated infections and
         related guidance, London: DH.

         Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992, London: HMSO.

         NHS Bournemouth & Poole, 2008. Adult Protection Policy. Poole: Bournemouth &
         Poole PCT.

         NHS Bournemouth & Poole, 2008. Safeguarding Children Policy. Poole:
         Bournemouth & Poole PCT.
         Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations (1992), Health and Safety
         Executive Series, London: HMSO.

         The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations, 1999.

         Uniform and Workwear, 2007. [Available at]:

                                                                                  Page 8 of 11
                                                                                   APPENDIX 1


                         EQUALITY IMPACT ASSESSMENT FORM

Department/Service area:                      Community Health Services

Policy lead/ person responsible for           Clinical Governance Manager
completing the assessment:

Name of the strategy or policy:               Uniform Policy and Dress Code

Who will the strategy or policy affect?       a) Patients
                                              b) Patients/ public
                                              c) Everybody

To which equality target groups does          a) Race
this strategy/policy apply?                   b) Disability
(Please circle all relevant groups,           c) Gender/ transgender
giving details if the policy is               d) Sexual Orientation
specifically for one group)                   e) Age
                                              f) Religion/ Belief

1. What is the main purpose or aim of the strategy or policy?

To outline clear standards by which the Organisation and staff members may uphold
our professional image across Bournemouth & Poole Community Health Services
and ensure legal compliance with the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

2. Has the strategy/policy been explained to those it might affect directly or indirectly?

Yes, via Policy Review Group members

3. Who has been involved in developing or reviewing the strategy/policy, including
committees or review groups with patient or staff representatives?

Deputy Directors, Heads of Service, Clinical Governance Manager, Lead Nurse for
Infection Control, Business Administrator, Equality & Rights Lead.

4. Has there been adequate input from relevant target groups who may be affected by
the strategy/policy?

Equality target group                         Input      (yes/ no)
People from black and minority ethnic
groups                                        Y
People who have a disability                  N

People of different gender/transgender        N

                                                                                    Page 9 of 11
       Equality target group                          Input        (yes/ no)
       People with different sexual orientations      N
       (lesbian, gay or bisexual)
       People from different age groups               Y

       People with different religions or beliefs     Y

       5. Please complete the following table and give reasons/comments for where:

          (a) The strategy/policy could have a positive impact on any of the equality target groups
              or contributes to promoting equality, equal opportunities and improving relations
              within equality target groups.

          (b) The strategy/policy could have a negative impact on any of the equality target
              groups, that is, disadvantage them in any way.

Equality Target       (a) Positive      (b) Negative          Reason/Comment          Information gained to
Group                 Impact            Impact                                        aid decision

                      High     Low      High        Low
Asian or Asian        x                                       This policy will
British people                                                benefit Community
Black or Black        x                                       Health Services staff
British people                                                and uphold our
White people          x                                       professional image
(including Irish                                              to service users.
Chinese people        x

Other racial /        x
ethnic group
(please specify)
Mixed race            x

Disabled people       x

Women                 x

Transgender           x
Gay, Lesbian and      x
Bisexual people
Older people          x
Younger people        x
Children              x

Faith groups          x
(please specify)

                                                                                           Page 10 of 11
      Please give a brief description of how this strategy/policy benefits the equality target
      groups identified in the above table, or how it promotes equality.

      All sensible actions will be taken ensure this policy respects religious requirements
      relating to modesty, culture and personal needs of staff. Any member of staff wishing
      to be exempt from a particular aspect of this policy on these grounds should discuss
      this with their line manager in the first instance.

7.    If there is a negative impact on any equality target group, is the impact intended or

8.    What actions could be taken to amend the strategy/policy to minimise the low negative


9.    If there is no evidence that the strategy/policy promotes equality, equal opportunities
      or improves relations within equality target groups, what amendments could be made
      to achieve this?


10.   How will the strategy or policy be implemented including any necessary training?

      This forms an integral part of Corporate and Local Induction programmes. There is
      also the opportunity to discuss individual requirements at interview.

      Date completed 3rd December 2009

      Signed: Clinical Governance Manager

      Please note:
      This is a legal document and needs to be made available for the public to view. Please
      ensure an electronic copy is forwarded to the Corporate Business Manager in order
      that it can be posted to the PCT website once completed. A signed hard copy and
      electronic copy should also be kept within your department for audit purposes.

                                                                                      Page 11 of 11

Shared By: