Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Bare below the elbow: New interest in the US?

Graphic: YNN-NY
A group of lawmakers in the New York state senate are considering a legislative mandate for bare below the elbow in New York hospitals, and perhaps even requiring hospitals to supply uniforms or on-site laundry facilities. You can read about it here.

5/8/11 addendum:  Here's an update with more detail.


  1. To provide some stimulating controversy: How is legislating banning of ties good, whereas legislating influenza vaccination and MRSA screening are bad?

    Seems to me that all of these legislative actions are a bad idea. Individual facilities and/or agencies such as TJC should employ the carrot model.

    Just my two cents.

  2. Agree--I think that legislative mandates are not an appropriate mechanism to reduce HAIs, since they don't necessarily allow facilities to focus on areas that are locally most important.

  3. Excellent point--I agree as well, this is yet another area I'd like state legislators to stay out of! Plus, the legislation would end up being quite lengthy and the article points out, they'd have to figure out how to deal not only with standard ties, but with bow ties, bolos, ascots, cravats, foulards, neckcloths, and string ties. Extra credit to anyone who knows what a "foulard" is....

    Finally, I can't resist pointing out one quote from the article that I think we can all agree on:

    "Sen. Diane Savino (D-Staten Island) added men in particular are to blame for the spread of infectious diseases such as MRSA."

  4. Here is an interesting article with some relevant data...
    Newly Cleaned Physician Uniforms and Infrequently Washed White
    Coats Have Similar Rates of Bacterial Contamination After an 8-Hour
    Workday: A Randomized Controlled Trial
    Journal of Hospital Medicine, Vol 6, No 4, pp 177-182, April 2011
    The cultured everyone's wrists too. No difference.

  5. See my comments on that paper here: