Sizing-One Size Fits Most

During my breast cancer journey, I had the opportunity many times to wear the dreadful traditional patient gown. So let’s talk about size, as size does matter and the “one size fits most” approach needs to change or be adjusted to those of you that manufacture and distribute the patient gown. This was a major dissatisfier for me as I put on the crunchy, oversized, and drafty garment. Not to mention the oversized sleeves which need to be shortened so lines can be better visualized by clinical staff. Also, patients frequently complain of being warm or too hot in the traditional gown made of cotton and polyester. Wearing an oversized gown on a petite frame was more than annoying, I cannot imagine having to had worn the traditional patient gown for an extended period of time as it also seemed heavy to me. My advice as an experienced Director of Clinical Quality, CMS collects data on the current height and weight of all inpatient admissions through the Quality Reporting Programs (as well as other data), so do you not think it is time to readjust the length and sweep of the gown based on the average height and weight of the patients currently being seen across healthcare organizations if you are going to take this “one size fits most” approach? Why not consider how care is delivered to better meet the needs of patients as most do wear a patient gown all day long and would like to be comfortable in a garment that fits appropriately by offering sizes based on height and weight again as an option. This could be a workable solution for PATIENTS but we need to rethink how to breathe new life into an old project. Manufacturers and distributors of the patient gown, you need to view your pictures on your websites and on my website (video) the gowns sweep the calves and/or ankles, patients look and feel ridiculous… Patients want to be comfortable, to have privacy in a gown, and finally, NO HARM to come to them during their stay, I do not believe the current traditional gown accomplishes this and is in fact dangerous to the delivery of care (CMS fall data, pressure ulcers, dislodgments). Building a better patient gown needs to incorporate a fabric that is light weight and soft, fits according to size, opens easily for care, incorporates the elements of safety and privacy, and is easily laundered and safe for the environment. Can we finally fix this…:) © 2016 Tracey L. Kennedy “All Rights Reserved.”

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