All about medical and disposable protective gloves!
In environments where hygiene is crucial, such as hospitals, laboratories, and pharmaceutical or food industries, the use of medical and disposable protective gloves is essential to prevent infections and contamination. This blog article provides you with the necessary information to understand everything about medical and disposable protective gloves, covering the following aspects:
- Definition: Medical gloves and protective gloves
- The usefulness of disposable gloves
- Wearing gloves during care procedures
- Quality standards
- Different materials of disposable gloves
- Difference between powdered and powder-free gloves
- Difference between sterile and non-sterile gloves
- Donning and doffing disposable gloves
- Recommendations and best practices for better protection
Medical gloves or protective gloves?
European regulations state that medical gloves must comply with Regulation (EU) 2017/745, while protective gloves must adhere to Regulation (EU) 2016/425. Medical gloves are specifically designed to ensure patient protection as medical devices, whereas protective gloves are developed to guarantee personnel safety as personal protective equipment (PPE).
Why use disposable gloves?
Disposable gloves play a vital role in preserving hygiene, especially in the healthcare setting. These gloves act as an effective barrier between the caregiver and the patient, ensuring their respective safety. Disposable gloves are designed to maintain hygiene by protecting against bodily fluids and any form of contamination.
When to wear medical or protective gloves during care procedures?
It is important to wear gloves in situations where there is a risk of contact with bodily fluids or mucous membranes. Additionally, it is recommended to use gloves when the patient’s or caregiver’s skin is damaged. However, wearing gloves is not necessary when in contact with intact skin.
Quality standards for disposable gloves
- The EN 455 standard addresses the characteristics of disposable medical gloves and the absence of holes.
- EN ISO 374-1:2016 ensures protection against chemicals, while EN ISO 374-5:2016 guarantees protection against microorganisms.
- ISO 13485 provides a quality management system for medical devices.
- ISO 21420 defines general requirements and test methods for the design of protective gloves.
- EN 16523-1 is used to determine chemical permeation resistance.
- ISO 16604 measures resistance to blood and bodily fluid penetration.
Which material for disposable gloves?
Different materials of gloves, such as latex, nitrile, and vinyl, are available. The choice between these materials depends on criteria such as resistance, protection offered, tactile sensitivity, and risk of allergies.
Latex gloves: Allergy risk
Latex gloves are resistant and flexible. They are effective against chemicals and provide high tactile sensitivity. However, it is important to note that they can cause allergic reactions.
Nitrile gloves are resistant to chemicals and puncture. They are recommended for tasks involving the handling of hazardous substances.
Vinyl gloves are not suitable for handling hazardous products or tasks requiring high tactile sensitivity. They are intended for general and short-term use.
In summary, for better protection, choose latex or nitrile gloves instead of vinyl gloves, which are more suitable for general and short-term use. Chemical resistance may vary depending on the specific product, so it is important to ensure that the gloves provide adequate protection.
Hybrid gloves that combine the advantages of vinyl and nitrile are also available.
Powdered or powder-free gloves?
You can choose between powdered gloves, usually with cornstarch, and powder-free gloves. Powdered gloves facilitate donning and offer more comfort, but they can cause allergic reactions and disperse in the air, increasing the risk of contamination.
Sterile or non-sterile gloves?
Non-sterile gloves are used for general tasks without a real risk of contamination, to maintain good hygiene.
Donning and doffing disposable gloves
Firstly, it is crucial to thoroughly wash your hands to ensure good hygiene. Then, grasp the edge of the cuff and slide your hand into the first glove, avoiding touching the outer surface as much as possible. Proceed in the same manner for the second glove, avoiding contact between the gloved hand and your bare skin.
To remove the first glove, grasp the cuff and turn the glove inside out. For the second glove, remove it by turning it inside out in the same way. This way, the gloves are removed without touching the outer surface. After removing the gloves, hand hygiene is necessary.
Recommendations and best practices for better protection
- Change gloves as soon as they show signs of wear or damage.
- Use a double pair of gloves when necessary for enhanced protection.
- Take care of your skin, which acts as a natural protective barrier.
- Wash hands before and after wearing gloves.
- Avoid wearing jewelry or long nails when wearing gloves.
- Always ensure that gloves are the right size and in good condition before wearing them.
- Change gloves frequently to ensure optimal protection.
As a provider of disposable personal protective equipment (PPE), our goal is to ensure optimal protection for your team. We offer a wide range of gloves that comply with European quality standards, available in various sizes to meet your specific needs.