Protocols for Using Gloves on Campus

When to Use Gloves:

Gloves are worn for two reasons- to reduce the risk of contamination or as personal protective equipment (PPE) when working with chemicals that require hand protection.

Gloves are not recommended for routine use on campus except for of as protection from chemical or biological substances, when there is risk bloodborne pathogen exposure, or in healthcare or laboratory areas.

Gloves can often lead to a fall sense of security for individuals wearing them, as they are move likely to touch contaminated surfaces because they feel protected, and the use of contaminated gloves caused by inappropriate donning and removing techniques may also result in virus transmission. The use of gloves may also discourage proper hand hygiene which combined with social distancing is the best defense against the spread of COVID-19. The use of gloves when not required also results in a waste of resources that are necessary for healthcare workers.

Gloves should be used on the University of Portland campus when routinely disinfecting community areas or when staff are interacting with a community member who is a presumed positive case of COVID-19.Certain departments may use gloves for additional tasks such as cleaning or exchanging shared equipment. Always use gloves when cleaning an area where an individual with a presumed positive case of COVID-19 has been. Gloves should be worn when using chemicals that require hand protection. Consult the SDS of any cleaner or disinfectant you are using to determine if glove is required. Ask your supervisor if you are unsure if you should wear gloves for a specific job duty.

How to Use Gloves:

Always use a new pair of disposable gloves, and never attempt to wash and reuse disposable gloves. Before using a pair of gloves check for tears or other defects. Always change your gloves if they are ripped, torn, or visibly soiled.

How to Remove Gloves:

Do not touch the exterior of the gloves when removing them as this area may be contaminated. Avoid touching your bare hand to the outside of a dirty glove. Always remove gloves by the cuff, not by the fingers, to prevent touching the contaminated area of the glove with your hands.  Always wash your hands after using gloves and do not use gloves as a substitute for hand washing. See the attached infographic on how to properly remove gloves.

References:  

 World Health Organization Glove Use Information Leaflet

CDC: When to Wear Gloves

(updated 7/28/2020)