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14 May 2019

How to safely remove disposable gloves

How to safely remove disposable gloves

The use of medical gloves in the healthcare sector is an essential aspect of providing safe and hygienic care. While all carers are aware of the need for medical gloves, not every carer - or healthcare professional - is aware of how to safely remove these.

Removing gloves might seem like a simple, straightforward task, however that is not neccessarily the case. One wrong move and the skin could become damaged, and a risk of contamination could occur. This is especially important when treating a patient with a contagious health problem. For this reason, it is crucial to know how to remove gloves safely.

Choosing the right gloves

Another area that many carers and healthcare professionals struggle with is glove selection - choosing the right gloves for the task at hand and for their specific needs. The key things to remember are that the chosen gloves should provide suitable protection, be the correct size, and not put the wearer or patient at risk of an allergic reaction. Latex is one of the top 14 allergens, which means that it's essential to be mindful of this when selecting a glove choice - the more a person is exposed to latex, the more likely they are to develop an allergy. To learn more about preventing allergic reactions related to glove use, have a read of our guide here

For further information on choosing the right gloves for the task at hand, have a read of our previously published guide to choosing the right medical gloves. It’s packed full of useful tips and pieces of advice, to help make the process easier.

Preventing cross-contamination

When working with cleaning fluids, chemicals, or providing patient car, it’s crucial that any contamination on the outer surface of the gloves being warn is not transferred onto the skin itself or onto any other clean objects. The issue is that certain cleaning fluids and chemicals can cause abrasions or irritation to the skin or damage to surfaces, while bodily fluids can spread infection, so it is essential that you are mindful of the need to remove gloves in a safe way.

Should the correct procedure not be followed, cross-contamination can occur, which can result in a range of issues. This can not only cause worry and distress to the glove wearer but potentially also concern and pain for the patient. This can also lead to health and safety concerns from bodies like the Care Quality Commission, and also from relatives of the person being cared for, which is why it’s so vital that care is taken when it comes to the removal of medical gloves.

The good news is that if you and your team are aware of how to safely remove disposable gloves, you can minimise the risks.

How to safely remove disposable gloves

Step 1: Gently pinch and hold the outside of the glove near to the wrist area.

Step 2: Peel the glove downwards, away from the wrist, carefully turning the glove inside out.

Step 3: Pull the glove away from your wrist until it has been removed from your hand, and then take the inside-out glove in your other gloved hand.

Step 4: With the hand that has been un-gloved, put your fingers under the wrist of the remaining glove, being careful not to touch the outside of the glove.

Step 5: Peel the glove downwards from the wrist, turning the glove inside out as you remove it.

Step 6: Carefully continute to pull the glove downwards, moving it over the inside-out glove being held within your gloved hand. This will ensure that both gloves end up inside out, with one glove safely store inside the other, which means there should be no contamination on your skin.

There you have it, a simple, step-by-step guide to safely removing medical gloves
 

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