Across Canada some employers have agreed to provide and launder uniforms for staff in designated areas caring for COVID-19 patients.
These agreements acknowledge the potential for uniforms to become contaminated by close contact and direct care of COVID-19 patients, and by exposure to the patient or patients’ environment in designated COVID-19 areas.
Nurses and all health care workers are justifiably concerned about exposing their families to the virus by bringing home contaminated uniforms, which require laundering daily. It is important for all of us to promote the health and safety of workers within the workplace, and to protect them and their families at home.
Therefore, the CFNU recommends employers implement practices to provide laundered uniforms daily to health care workers caring for COVID-19 patients in designated areas as soon as feasibly possible.
If it is not possible to implement this practice, employers must provide health care workers who are caring for COVID-19 patients a safe area where they can change into their street clothes prior to leaving the health care facility premises.