Bengaluru: Taking note of the seriousness of the issue, Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences (RGUHS)- that controls all the medical colleges in the state has directed medical students to avoid wearing apron outside medical college and hospital campus.
The move came into action after the administration noticed students of several medical colleges affiliated to the university roaming outside the campus wearing their apron. The authorities of the university have highly criticized the use of apron outside the campus and restricted the use of it within the campus only.
In a circular issued on March 6 by the registrar of the university directing all the dean, director and principal of colleges affiliated to RGUHS, it mentioned “With reference to the above subject, it is observed that the students of affiliated college of RGUHS Bangalore and the juniors doctors/students of Medical/Dental/Nursing/Ayush/Pharmacy/Physiotherapy/Allied Health Science courses, are wearing APRON outside the College/Hospital premises and while travelling in public transports.”
Mentioning the reason, the circular added, “It not only looks odd, but belittles the importance of the attire and wearing the same apron in public places and also at work is unhygienic. Hence, you are hereby directed to issue clear instructions to all students of your college to strictly avoid wearing aprons in public places and while travelling on public transport. It is directed to all the students to follow the instructions strictly.”
The white apron for medical students is widely known as a symbol for both professionalism and authority. Therefore, the University has asked the higher ups of all the medical college/hospital to impose these strict instructions in order to maintain a dignity of the white coats in medical field.
Commenting on this, MK Ramesh, the vice-chancellor of RGUHS told TOI, “Apron holds a certain dignity. Patients associate it with a doctor and respect it. Imagine them seeing a doctor at a restaurant, pub or on the train with the coat. It spoils the honour associated with the apron. As students, we never wore it outside. But now I see students roaming around Brigade Road and Church Street in it.”
“The concern is also about contamination. The usage of apron started as a means to protect the doctors and later on became a part of their identity. In case a student wears it in hospital and then at a public place or vice versa, there are chances of transmission of an infection,” the VC added.
Meanwhile, medical students have reacted to the issue differently. Some have said that the first year students purposely do this to flaunt their achievement and on the other hand some have even claimed that the college/hospital security doesn’t allow them to enter the campus without wearing the apron.