By Aaron J. Moore, MSN, RN-BC, travel nurse expert
As nurses we know we have the overall best uniforms when it comes to jobs. I have heard them referred to as suits or pajamas. To me they’re just simple and comfortable. But in this day and age, even a simple thing like scrubs can be made complex with different colors and styles. Especially for non-style experts like myself; most non-work days I can be found in shorts, T-shirt and flip flops.
I have found that most hospitals are pretty easygoing when it comes to dress code. Any pair of clean scrubs will do. They are more worried about hand washing and a properly displayed name tag than what colors you are wearing.
Some, however, have taken dress codes to the extreme. I have worked at some hospitals that mandate embroidered scrubs in only a limited line of styles and colors that are bought through them. As a traveler, I have worked for this type of hospital. I was a little shocked the first day when I showed up to orientation and saw everyone else in these “designer scrubs.” I quickly went to the manager and asked what my dress code would be. Luckily, I only had to wear the light blue color that the other staff had and in any style.
This was the last time I made the mistake of not asking about the dress code at the unit ahead of time. Of course, I always waited until after accepting the job to ask simple questions like this, but overall it helped me better prepare myself for the first day.
I would rather avoid surprises on a travel assignment, and you can apply this process to any questions you may have. If you have a major question about your work assignment, ask during your interview. When it comes to smaller inquiries like dress code, keep these for after you’ve locked up the job.
In regards to scrubs, I always carried a random assortment with me. If I had to buy a certain type or color, I kept them after the assignment, since you never know when another job might call for the same type. Or you may just go back to that hospital system again in your traveling future.
So pull on those pajamas ... uh, I mean professional work attire called scrubs and call your recruiter about a job. Live your own adventure this fall--in comfort and style--with travel nursing.