A Guide to PPE in Healthcare

Personal protective equipment (PPE) is used in many different industries and for many purposes. One of the most important places that you will find it will be in hospitals and it is absolutely vital for the health of workers, patients, visitors and public health that proper PPE is used at all times.

Why PPE is So Important

PPE is essential in a hospital as it is used to protect those in the hospital from infection and from spreading germs. While hospitals have incredibly high cleaning standards, they can also be dangerous places if steps are not taken to protect public health as it is somewhere that those with illnesses that can very quickly spread through the air, surface contact or bodily fluids constantly come through.

Types of PPE

There are many different types of PPE that are used in healthcare and will be found throughout any hospital – here are a few of the main types that you will see.


Transmission of an injection often occurs through the hands as people use these to touch people and foreign objects, particularly in a hospital setting. This is why latex gloves are so important and must be used and changed constantly by healthcare workers.


Another way that transmission occurs is through the mouth, especially when it comes to airborne viruses. Masks are supposed to cover the mouth and nose and can both protect the individual from breathing in germs as well as passing on germs (this is particularly important when healthcare workers are working with extremely vulnerable patients).

Goggles & Face Shields

Eye protection in the form of goggles and face shields are all important. This is because blood and other bodily fluids (which are common in hospitals) can easily come into contact with the eyes and germs in these fluids can then enter the body through the mucous membranes. 


There are then clothing items such as aprons, gowns and shoe covers that are mainly used in surgery to protect the healthcare workers and the patient as well as by visitors when visiting a person that is in isolation.

Sourcing PPE

As such vital equipment that can save lives, it is vital that high-quality PPE is sourced for hospitals and that staff always have access to what they need. It is also important that special laundry containers are used for items that can be cleaned or special waste containers for PPE that must be disposed of.

PPE plays a hugely important role in healthcare and can save lives, so it is vital that everyone has access to the right type of PPE and that it is always worn properly.

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