Work Wear Textile in Medical Sector

What is Work Wear Textile in Medical Sector?

Work wear textile is engineered to protect against contamination of fluids pathogens. In hospitals, barrier textiles prevent the spread of infectious pathogens to both patients and staff. All health care workers must use protective clothing such as gowns, gloves, drapes, facemasks, and caps when in contact with patients to prevent disease transmission. Disposable and reusable textiles are two types of products employed in the healthcare field against infectious pathogens.

Work wear textile in medical sector
Fig: Workwear textile in the medical sector

Disposable textile generally serves only as single-use products and then they have to be immediately discarded as bio-hazardous materials. Whereas reusable textiles can be sterilized and laundered for reuse.

Raw Material Specification and Manufacturing Methods of Work Wear Textile:

Generally, both disposable and reusable medical workwear textiles are made of polymeric fibers, but they have different structures. Disposables are usually nonwoven fabrics, which are produced by closely entangled fibers into a web and then layering the resultant material into sheets.

The fibers used for disposable products are as below:

  1. Polyethylene,
  2. Polypropylene,
  3. Polyester and their blends.

Many disposable textiles also contain wood pulp fibers as a major component. Reusable textiles, which were traditionally made of cotton fibers but it is replaced by polyester due to high durability and low cost.

Nonwoven fabrics for disposable surgical gowns and drapes are made of melt-blown and spun-bond polypropylene and polyethylene fibers which are more advantageous. Whereas for reusable gowns and drapes fabrics are made of spun polyester or cotton fibers woven with high thread density to provide better barrier properties. The facemasks and caps are made of the same material as above in both types but their structures are somewhat less tight than gowns and drapes. All these products are then finished with a microporous film of PTFE to enhance their water repellency and breathability properties to provide better protection along with comfort to the wearer.

Whereas the gloves are made of 100% rubber which does not allow the penetration of infectious fluids through it. These gloves are generally discarded after a single use because it contains high infectious materials after use and reusing them is more hazardous.

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