The Star-Herald

The evil that is a hospital Johnny

Hospitals can be viewed as a necessary evil. Did you ever wonder why there is a push to put patients into Johnny robes? These ill-fitting, clumsy rejects from the Korean War are straight jackets on the minimal. 

Designed to tangle the patient into submission, they are the first step in locking up the sick.

The drapes are not designed to be worn beyond the bed. Try taking a walk. Most of those used in the Northern Lights facility are for the sheer sadistic pleasure of seeing a flash of dimpled butts and pale skin. 

One must endeavor to use buttons and ties to hold them to a modicum of decency.

There are newer models out there that cost about the same. We expect the doctors and nurses to keep upon the latest technology, drugs and procedures. 

We do not expect the same of the men and women in charge of covering patients. They are left to enjoy sadism at its finest. Straight jacket the prisoner, ahem, patient in a device that keeps them dependent on a third party for any decency.

A nurse in the Memphis hospital system, frustrated with the situation, redesigned the hospital Johnny using Velcro in place of the buttons, snaps and straps. She did this in the 1990s. 

The result was a much more workable solution that respected the patient. Cleaning was easier. Examining more respectful. And above all, the public at large was not subject to dimpled moons.  Most modern cleaning companies offer an ultraviolet light program to sterilize surfaces. One such program is used by JetBlue to clean its passenger cabins. 

UV light kills bacteria. The water department uses it to make your water safe to drink. It can sterilize Velcro. It is very cheap. 

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Orpheus Allison is a photojournalist living in The County who graduated from UMPI and earned a master of liberal arts degree from the University of North Carolina. He began his journalism career at WAGM television later working in many different areas of the US. After 20 years of television he changed careers and taught in China and Korea.

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