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Miami Valley Hospital Adopts Color-based Dress Code

DAYTON, OHIO—(February 1, 2009)— Miami Valley Hospital is rolling out a new hospital-wide dress policy. Effective  February 1, 2009, the hospital will move to a system of color-coded attire for all staff members working in direct patient care and clinical support positions. The new policy will apply to both the main campus and Miami Valley Hospital South.

The decision to update the hospital’s dress policy was a true team effort. More than 200 staff members spent a year researching dress-code standards and sifting through studies from other medical centers that have adopted similar policies. They also gathered data from what was learned on two MVH nursing units that trialed color-coded uniforms. At the end of the study evidence proved that having a consistent dress code has a positive impact on patients and their perception of care and can result in higher patient and nurse satisfaction.

“Our goal in adopting this new policy is to create an environment of caring and clinical excellence,” says Gary Blake, vice president of operations. “The new standard will make it easier for patients to differentiate nurses and other caregivers, and to present a professional image that supports patients’ peace of mind about the services they are receiving at Miami Valley Hospital.”

Miami Valley has selected certain colors of scrubs to distinguish one patient care specialty from another. When the policy goes into effect, patients, families and visitors and even employees will know instantly that workers dressed in navy or white are nurses.

Miami Valley will use these colors to identify caregivers:

Navy or white will be worn by registered nurses.

Sandstone will be worn by patient care technicians, health unit coordinators, and staffing secretaries. 

Wine will be worn by licensed technologists, such as those working in medical imaging.

Teal will be worn by technicians, such as those working in EKG, endoscopy and other areas of the hospital. 

Hunter Green will be worn by registered respiratory therapists and central distribution personnel.

Black will be worn by environmental services staff.

White scrub jackets or lab coats worn with business attire will be the dress standard for staff members working in other patient support roles.

The new professional image policy affects about 3,600 individuals or 60 percent of the hospital’s workforce. According to according to Blake, Miami Valley is the first hospital in the area to adopt a color-coded uniform policy throughout all patient and clinical areas.