Do Nurses Wear White Coats or Not?

Do nurses wear white coats

Traditionally nurses wear scrubs at work since they are a lot easier to wear. Culturally, scrubs don’t command as much authority, however, men have to wear those scrubs too.

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Do nurses wear white coats?

Many nurses today do wear scrubs, however, there are exceptions where nurses will get to wear white coats.

This can depend on the country that you’re in, but even when nurses wear coats, they won’t be wearing them very often.

Nurse practitioners absolutely do wear white coats because they are dealing with more immediate problems.

There are many needs where there could be blood or some kind of residue that could stain the nurse’s work clothes.

The white coats also let them carry things when they are working with the white coats.

They are easily cleaned or can be disposed of when they need to be gotten rid of.

It also gives off the look that their position is urgent which is generally true.

In fact, nurse practitioners have some of the highest numbers of patients who are going to be approaching a critical state.

Licensed and practical nurses also wear white coats because they have more cases where they need to have a presence of authority.

It’s a good thing for them to be able to do so that they can introduce a level of seriousness without making the patient feel afraid.

If the nurse one day decides to become a doctor, they will be wearing the white coat more often since there’s more of a need to wear those things.

It certainly gives off a more professional tone when the nurses are around people who don’t come to the hospital very often.

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Do nurses wear white coats or not

Do nurse practitioners wear white coats?

Nurse practitioners do in fact wear white coats. In many cases, they need to for the kinds of cases and conversations that they are going to be having.

See also: Best White Scrubs

The area where they do this of course is relevant as to why they wear the white coats.

Some cultures have all the nurses wear white coats while others don’t have them wear any.

Some people will confuse them for full-on doctors, but there are some key differences in that assessment.

Generally, there are some differences when it comes to the amount of authority each party has.

Nurse practitioners can prescribe medication and do all of those things that a hospital needs them to do.

They can take care of urgent needs as well, which isn’t something that people in scrubs would do.

The customer might have the wrong idea when it comes to the attire of scrubs that the nurse would be wearing.

It’s better to assure their confidence that the staff taking care of them knows what they’re doing.

That’s not the only reason why they do it, but it’s the immediate instinctive benefit of being able to do it.

There are also things that they can only carry by wearing that coat.

In general, it can be used to show where they currently are on their journey to grow and become someone productive in the workplace.

Of course, the hospital isn’t going to have a recent college graduate wear one of these coats because they haven’t earned it yet.

Once, the nurse does actually show potential for how good of a nurse they can be, you will slowly see them get these coats and it becomes more of their identity in the workplace.

It is something to be very proud of once they are actually able to get that coat on.

Do nurse anesthetists wear white coats?

Generally, nurse anesthetists do not wear white coats when they are in the hospital.

For the most part, there is no practical purpose for them to do so.

They aren’t carrying anything that important to the point where they need these coats.

Scrubs are something that men and women wear in the hospital because they aren’t going to be seen that often in the hospital and are more perceived as doing the legwork.

See also: Where Do Nurse Anesthetists Work?

The people in scrubs are very hardworking, but it’s because they are constantly moving that they end up wearing that uniform.

Nurse anesthetists don’t need to wear them for authority purposes either.

Anyone in the hospital who isn’t a janitor has authority in that workplace, but there are also different levels of authority.

Though anesthetists are important and serve purposes only for what they are able to do, it’s still important for them to wear scrubs to get more done.

See also: Why Nurses Are Important?

Someone like a cardiologist or a surgeon is only going to be seeing a couple of patients a day who have urgent needs that have to be taken care of.

Generally, that’s a lot less pressure than an anesthetist is going to have on a daily basis.

In fact, nurse anesthetists will wear just about anything except for a lab coat.

See also: CRNA Interview Questions

Generally, they get to the dirtier parts of the job and would just ruin the white coat anyway.

For their job, they wear scrubs, hats, masks, rubber gloves, and other protective coverings.

The one thing that these clothing pieces have in common is that they are easy to throw away.

What the people in this job are going to deal with is going to depend from person to person, but there are going to be a few consistencies in what they do every day at work.

Why do nurses wear white coats?

Originally, doctors did not wear white coats, there was a practical reason to wear the color back.

The color black would hide all of the blood and things that would look disgusting to the average person.

See also: Can Nurses Wear Any Color Scrubs?

Generally, the white coat would come in the late 1800s with a famous painting depicting doctors wearing white coats.

It really stood out to people and eventually, real hospitals began taking the painting literally with how it was supposed to be interpreted.

Today, it has become such a norm that no one knows about black coats.

The white coat is a symbol of authority and trust.

See also: Nursing Symbols

It lets the people in the hospital know the doctor/nurse practitioner knows what they are doing and you can trust them.

Regardless of whether that’s true in reality is irrelevant.

It has worked out to the advantage of those who want to trust medical professionals to do their job.

That kind of reassurance is really important when a nurse or doctor wants the patient to be calm.

It also makes them a lot more likely to respect whatever kind of medical advice they are going to give to them.

There are some things that people in scrubs can benefit from those people in white coats don’t get to benefit from.

One of them is getting to see it like it’s more personal when they talk to each other.

Despite them having a medical license it feels like you’re talking to someone that you have a lot more in common with when compared to someone in a white coat.

There are also going to be times when it’s inappropriate to wear scrubs in the hospital.

Someone who isn’t wearing a white coat shouldn’t be in kinds of serious situations like big surgeries or telling others that someone has passed away.

See also: Can Nurse Practitioners Do Surgery?

Conclusion: Do nurses wear lab coats?

If the situation calls for it, any nurse will wear a white lab coat.

Of course, the coat wouldn’t have any value if everyone working in the hospital wore a white coat.

Only the people who make the toughest decisions in the hospital should wear these white coats.

Of course, there are nurses who have earned the right to wear lab coats, however, most of them will not wear these coats.

Not because they haven’t worked hard enough, but because they simply don’t have the experience to make very difficult decisions.

And scrubs are also something to be proud of.

All doctors need nurses or else they wouldn’t get any work done.

Some nurses do wear them, but white coats will always be associated with doctors due to the implication of the coat.

Authority is very important in the medical workplace.

And there needs to be someone who is going to accept the responsibility of making hard decisions that are going to save lives.

See also: Responsibility of a Nurse

Though a nurse ultimately wants the same thing, many of them are not ready to accept the responsibility of someone’s failing health.

However, anytime a nurse gets the opportunity to wear it they absolutely should.

The coat doesn’t have to be white either. In some cases, they are grey or navy.

For the medical staff to see what ailments a patient is going to have, they need labs to be able to out what these people have.

It’s one of the most urgent positions in the hospital and all people should respect it.

That’s why they need something like a lab coat to immediately identify them.

It has a strong purpose and prevents confusion from happening.

At this point, you should know whether do nurses wear white coats or not.

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About Ida Koivisto, BSN, RN, PHN

Ida is both a registered nurse and public health nurse. Her passion is to provide as much valuable information about nursing to the world as possible. In her spare time from work and blogging, Ida loves to work out at the gym and spend time with relatives.