Monday, September 9, 2013

Universal Gloving Revisited

Here is a brief invited commentary that I authored on the benefits of universal gloving. There is some evidence to suggest that universal gloving, at least during respiratory virus season in pediatric ICUs, may provide an infection prevention benefit. 

We published a controlled trial of universal gloving in a surgical ICU demonstrating that a universal gloving strategy is at least as effective as employing contact precautions. 

Universal gloving at the bedside is not a panacea. Concerns about universal gloving are not unfounded. Without doubt, donning gloves at all times puts a barrier between provider and patient, as explored in this perspective published in the New York Times.  A similar viewpoint was recently published by Dr. Karen Sibert. One author feels that gloving is the worst enemy of hand hygiene.

Apart from gloving as part of standard precautions, I am still not sure how best to employ the use of examination (non-sterile) gloves in clinical settings. 

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