As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to make its presence felt, the use of isolation gowns remains popular as healthcare apparel or personal protective equipment (PPE). Isolation gowns are defined as healthcare apparel that is used to safeguard medical professionals, staff, and patients from contamination and transfer of body fluids and germs in isolation situations. Isolation gowns can help to protect frontline medical workers and staff members as well as vulnerable patients in isolation from solids, fluid penetration, and infectious droplets. There are many types of isolation gowns in the current market and this industry is only expected to grow manifold in the coming years. But it is important to choose the right isolation gown for efficient protection. Given all the different options of isolation gowns available in the market, how would you know to select the most suitable washable isolation gowns? In this article, we will walk through the different levels and categories of isolation gowns so that you understand the fundamentals.
Categories of Isolation Gowns
Medical gowns are known by several names, like operating room gowns, procedural gowns, non-surgical gowns, surgical isolation gowns, surgical gowns, reusable gowns, and single-use gowns. However, they are mainly categorized under two types:
Surgical Gowns: These are sanitary textile gowns worn in sterile environments by healthcare providers. They are generally worn during surgical procedures to protect both the healthcare providers and the patient from the transfer of germs and body fluids.
Non-surgical or Isolation Gowns: These are protective clothing for healthcare providers, patients, and visitors to prevent contamination due to microorganisms and body fluids in minimal or low-risk patient isolation situations.
Levels of Protection for Isolation Gowns
Isolation gowns are protective healthcare apparel that is used by both patients and healthcare workers in surgical rooms, hospitals, and other healthcare settings. These isolation gowns come with different levels of protection and are intended for certain settings and situations. The protection levels that are recognized by FDA are drafted by the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation's American National Standards Institute/Association. Different types of isolation gowns must adhere to set standards and undergo several tests. They can determine the evaluation and categorization of the effectiveness and quality of liquid barriers in protective clothing and coverings designed for use in medical settings. Before buying or using isolation gowns, you should look at the product labels to ensure it is meant to provide adequate protection.
Level 1: Minimal Risk
Minimal-risk isolation gowns are used in standard isolation and basic care as they are used as a cover gown for both the patient and visitors.
Level 2: Low Risk
Low-risk isolation gowns are used for suturing or during blood drawing. They are normally used by individuals that are working in pathology laboratories and intensive care units.
Level 3: Moderate Risk
Moderate-risk isolation gowns are used in trauma care facilities, inserting IV lines, arterial blood drawing, or emergency room situations.
Level 4: High Risk
High-risk isolation gowns are used for protection against infectious diseases and fluid-intense procedures. They are also used during surgeries and procedures when pathogen resistance is needed to protect against suspected non-airborne infectious diseases.
Finding The Right Isolation Gowns
Reusable isolation gowns are growing in popularity as it is a great budget and environmentally-conscious option. However, there are a few things you would need to consider while selecting these washable isolation gowns. Here are some of them:
Purpose of the Isolation Gown
Who will be wearing the washable isolation gown? Specifying who will be wearing them can go on to determine what kind of patients they will be handling or coming in contact with and what setting they will be working in. This will help to decide whether isolation gowns are necessary, and if yes, how much protection is required and what type of isolation gown you would need.
The Environmental Risk Level
Determining the type of environment's risk level and the kind of exposure that is anticipated can help you to choose the isolation gown type that you would need. The risk level of an environment is generally dependent on the type of activities or procedures being performed, potential infections of the patient, the amount of body fluid to be dealt with, and the exposure time limit. The higher the risk level, the more protective gown you would need. For instance, for a low-risk environment like drawing blood, the medical professional can go for a Level 2 isolation gown.
The Gown's Material
Washable isolation gowns are made of cotton or synthetic materials like poly-cotton blend or polyester. Synthetic reusable isolation gowns generally do a better job of protecting against fluids, as cotton materials can quickly absorb liquids and fluids.
Reusable or Disposable
Isolation gowns are classified as "single-use or disposable" and "reusable or washable." Both of them offer the same level of protection. However, washable isolation gowns are good for the environment as they don't end up in the landfills like their disposable counterparts. But they can wear out over time or impose risk to the person wearing them if they are not properly cleaned.
Choosing the Best Provider
Once you have determined the type of isolation gown you need, you should always go for a healthcare provider that can efficiently and consistently supply the best products to you. Always partner with a provider who has a successful track record of high-quality products, flexibility when it comes to changing needs, on-time deliveries, and offers assistance during difficult supply chain situations. They should also have long-term customers, solid testimonials as proof of their service, a wide range of products, and products for different budgets.
At Nobles Health Care Product Solutions, we have a commonly shared goal- to provide customers the service they deserve when it comes to quality medical supplies. Whether stocking for a clinic or buying it for yourself, we are here to help you pick the right healthcare apparel and supplies. Our medical and healthcare products are perfect for all frontline workers- surgeons, doctors, nurses, and medical staff. To know what you need and learn more about our healthcare and medical products, visit us at https://nobleshealthcare.com/products/reusable-isolation-gown-gray-blockade-pack-of-7.
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