Some work environments are more demanding than others. Hospitals are especially difficult and contain many dangers. Medical staff often have to work their entire shift on their feet. Sharp objects such as needles can fall and cause significant injury. Body fluids such as blood can spill and cause infection. All of these make hospital a stressful and hazardous environment. Why then are Crocs banned in many hospitals?
They were popular just a few years ago. However, some hospital have banned Crocs because they have been deemed unsafe. There are multiple reasons, but many experts feel that Crocs are just for casual wear. Hospitals have plenty of hazards such as sharp objects and blood that Crocs would provide insufficient protection. To work in an a hospital environment, medical staff will need to choose a different type of shoe. This is disappointing to some medical workers are huge fans of Crocs. Crocs offered a number of benefits, including their legendary comfort. But now, the medical staffers will need to choose a different brand.
The Gravity of a Ban
Think about it. The fact that an item of clothing is banned says something big. An employer might look down upon or snub their nose at a certain type of clothing. But the fact that Crocs are banned in many (if not most) hospitals in the West says something important.
It made headlines a few years ago. Probably the biggest employer was NHS, Britain’s National Health Service. But many hospital groups in Europe and the United States have also banned them. If you work as a medical staff, it would be wise to check with a co-worker or management to see if you are allowed to wear Crocs.
The main reason behind these guidelines is simply safety. Crocs are fantastically designed shoes and many people enjoy wearing them outside of work. However, for hospital use, there are better types of footwear out there. Crocs have a number of issues. They’ll probably never be fixed because they are trademark design choices. Keep your Crocs for home use. But if you work in a hospital, be prepared to purchase a different type of shoe.
Some people don’t like the look of Crocs. But a characteristic that shows the shoes simply don’t belong in a hospital are the large holes on top of the shoes. These are a huge hazard in the hospital environment.
There are 13 “portholes” on each shoe, as they are called. They’re used to aerate the feet and let out moisture. They’re also fun to customize with “Jibbitz” icons. Walking on a path on a summer day outside, this is quite nice to have. While this is great for casual use, having holes in your footwear can be a horrible design decision in a hazardous environment like a hospital. Sharp objects like needles can fall onto your feet. Fluids like blood or chemicals can spill from high above. These fluids can infect you with horrible diseases. While being comfortable in Crocs is nice, this is too high of a price to pay.
There is also a possibly serious issue if you don’t wear the Crocs’ straps properly. There could be an accident when you’re moving a patient because of the shoe slipping. There’s simply a lack of support on the backend. This can become dangerous if you’re moving something heavy. Once again, Crocs are designed for casual use. They’re not really designed for a strenuous work environment.
Crocs were popular in hospitals for multiple reasons. Probably the main one was for being slip resistant. Hospitals are a dynamic environment and you’ll probably encounter many spills on the floor throughout the day. If you have regular shoes, you might end up slipping on them and getting hurt. Slip-resistant shoes are often a far better choice. In fact, many employers require slip resistant shoes while at work. Crocs fit this role for awhile until employers wised up to how hazardous they were.
Crocs also have no laces. In general, many people hate the hassle of laces. In a hospital environment, no laces means a huge benefit. Quite simply, you won’t trip on them. You also don’t have to waste your time tying them. Laces are often made of cloth and There’s no need to buy replacement laces either, which saves you money. Overall, a huge win for Crocs.
One great selling point of the Crocs is that they are easily wiped cleaned. The maintenance of a shoe is one thing that is often overlooked. Think if you wore regular shoes like sneakers to a hospital. They’d look nice for the first few days. However, eventually they would get dirty. If you got blood on them, what could you do? It would cause a horrible stain. But with Crocs, you could just use a paper towel and a cleaning liquid to get off most substances. This was a major selling point of Crocs. Now that you can’t wear them, when selecting a work shoe be sure to choose something that can be easily cleaned.
It’s easy to see why many nurses and other hospital staff loved Crocs. They worked long shifts on their feet. Crocs were slip resistant and very comfortable. Unfortunately, there are several hazards to Crocs. The top end of the shoe’s holes means objects and liquids can fall onto the feet. And there are issues with the Crocs straps. Hopefully, there will be a future shoe that has Crocs’ legendary comfort and can be used in hospital environments.
So what are the alternatives? There are RX Crocs that you can look into. These don’t have any holes on top of the shoes. If you’re thinking about buying them, be sure to check with your employer first. The last thing you need is to buy some shoes, to only discover you can’t wear them.
Alternative work shoes exist. However, Crocs are famous for their comfort. They’ve even won numerous awards for it from official foundations. Finding a comfortable shoe isn’t easy. Perhaps you can go with a recommendation from a coworker or friend. You should try to have them be anti-slip.