Clinical Site Etiquette

General Guidance

Clinical sites are primarily places of work and can be busy, sometimes stressful, environments. Respect all of those for whom your clinical learning site is their workplace, and their time and priorities when you request their assistance.

  • Be punctual
  • Present yourself appropriately for a professional workplace. Comply with any advice offered on your dress or behaviour by a member of staff.
  • Do not smoke. Smoking is prohibited on all clinical campuses.
  • Observe local rules and signage. Turn off mobile phones where instructed to do so by staff.
  • Maintain high standards of personal hygiene at all times.
  • Wash your hands before and after every patient contact.
  • Health and Safety procedures may differ between sites. When on a clinical site local hospital rules apply. Be sure you attend all mandatory induction sessions and are aware of local procedures and policies.
  • Comply with all local guidelines and instructions.

ASK if you are unsure

Theatre Etiquette & Discipline

Ideally, you should attend theatre with the team to which you are attached and follow instructions from the supervising clinician at all times. If asked to attend theatre without a staff member to bring you in, go to the theatre reception desk first. Wait there if it is not manned - do not enter the theatre complex.

  • Wear eye protection
  • Ensure your UCD student ID badge is visible
  • If you have open wounds / abrasions / infections, you must inform your clinical supervisor before entering the theatre complex – they will advise you further
  • You may be invited to assist during surgery, in which case you must be competent to scrubAsk one of the team to show you how to do this in advance and if you have not done it you must let your supervisor know this. Scrubbing guidelines (including hand washing/drying and double-gloving techniques for theatre) are in place on each site and must be strictly adhered to.
  • Hair must be secured under a theatre hat
  • Wear a face mask when entering theatre & remove and discard when no longer neeeded - do not hang it around your neck
  • Scrubs are provided and must be returned into the linen basket after use - do not remove scrubs from the theatre complex. 
  • ‘Regular’ clothing may be worn in reception, PACU, changing rooms; all other areas require scrubs to be worn. Change into fresh theatre attire on arrival
  • Wear well fitting cleanable shoes and use shoe covers
  • Do not borrow theatre shoes belongng to staff these may be needed
  • There are rarely any spare lockers so do not bring any valuables or jewellry with you
  • Movements in and out should be restricted and excessive noise and distractions avoided. You will be fully instructed in gowning, gloving and infection control practices in an Introduction to Surgery lecture which is mandatory for all students. Wear protective visor, mask, gloves, apron and gownsWear protective double gloves if scrubbed-in
  • Follow direct instructions of lead surgeon at all times

Universal Precautions for the Avoidance of Infection

All students MUST attend the mandatory Infection Control Workshop run by the Clinical Skills team in the Skills Lab during the Belfield based weeks of the course. It is your responsbility to attend and to familiarise yourself
with all material covered.

In the event of an accidental sharps injury you must:

  1. Immediately encourage bleeding from the wound or puncture site
  2. Wash under a cold running tap, do not scrub
  3. Cover with a plaster or dressing
  4. Dispose of sharp safely
  5. Inform your clinical supervisor immediately (senior staff member or module coordinator) & follow all advice given. They will assist you with the following steps:
  6. Report the incident immediately to Occupational Health & attend the Occupational Health doctor. Complete an incident form in accordance with local hospital policy