Students in a professional setting must dress in a manner that adds to, and does not detract from, effective communication. The appearance of a professional practitioner is important and should be considered carefully; in general, students should be clean and smartly dressed. Please note the following guidance to ensure effective, sensitive communication and adherence to Health and Safety Guidance.

Students are expected to wear the regulation uniform unless advised otherwise by the placement partner.

Whether or not a uniform is worn, the student will be expected to portray a professional image at all times which should promote confidence in the student’s skills to patients/clients, visitors and other staff whom the student come into contact with.

It is essential that the student do not cause unnecessary discomfort or harm to patients/clients and/or themselves as a result of the student grooming and attire.

Students are expected to comply with the principles of the following dress code, however, please note that the uniform policy of the placement partner overrides these principles where requirements in excess of these are stipulated.


Must be clean, a reasonable natural colour, well groomed, neat and must be worn off the collar to reduce the incidence of cross infection as hair is known to be a potential carrier of staph aureus. Hair should be tied back away from the face.


Must be filed short and kept clean, no artificial nails or attachments should be worn, nail varnish is not allowed as this can harbour or cause infection.


Tattoos, where they are extensive or deemed offensive must be covered at all times. In clinical areas advice must be sought from infection prevention regarding suitable covering and ‘bare below the elbow’ policy.


The face must be uncovered, no piercings, tattoos or face paint should be worn. Make up must be discreet/natural.


To avoid potential risk of contamination to patients from resident bacteria on the skin, the student should wash, bathe or shower daily.
Heavy perfume/aftershave/deodorants can cause discomfort / nausea / asthmatic attacks in some patients/ clients and others, so brands should be chosen carefully.
Cigarette smoke odours can also be offensive to others.


The only jewellery permitted is a plain wedding ring and small stud earrings (only one earring in each ear). No other jewellery including wristwatches may be worn. Fob watches are permitted. This is to protect the student and the patient / client from injury during care activities.

Head Covering

Must be plain black or navy, close fitting to the head with no decorations.


Must be black, not fabric or suede, with a rubber sole and low heel. Strappy sandals must not be worn. Shoes must give the student’s feet adequate support and should be lace up or slip on type.


Must be navy blue in colour and should not be worn when carrying out care procedures.


A full length coat is required to cover up uniforms for community placements /visits or whilst travelling to/from placements.


Coloured /patterned socks must not be worn and should be plain navy or black.

Name / ID badges

Must be worn at all times, patients / clients have a right to know who is caring
for them, no other badges should be worn to minimise risk when moving / handling.


Care must be taken to avoid dressing in such a way that could be seen as politically, culturally, ethnically or sexually provocative or inappropriate.

The wearing of uniforms in public is not normally allowed. However, uniform can be worn whilst travelling to and from placement on the condition that it is fully covered by a full-length coat. This includes travelling on public transport and also when students are participating in community visits in uniform or travelling to UCLan for clinical skills sessions.

Please note that the students should only wear student UCLan uniform on placements organised by the work-based learning team or on elective/alternate/internship placements that have been agreed – the student should not wear UCLan student uniform whilst working in any other capacity. No other uniform is acceptable whilst on placement.

In placement settings where uniforms are not worn students should dress informally, but smartly. Normally jeans, leggings, shorts, trainers and pumps should not be worn whilst on placement.

If a student is considered inappropriately dressed, the student may be sent off-duty and be reported absent until the student returns to duty appropriately dressed. Hours should be recorded as such and no clinical hours will be recorded for these absences. If inappropriate dress is a persistent problem, the Course Leader will be informed, and the student may be referred to a Fitness for Practise panel.

For students on health programmes Uniforms are issued by the University in order to comply with the requirements of uniform policy across the range of placement partners.

Uniforms issue is as follows:

  • Nursing and Midwifery students: 4 Tunics and 3 Trousers

  • Physiotherapy Students: 2 Tunics, 2 polo shirts and 3 Trousers

  • Occupational Therapy Students: 2 Tunics, 2 polo shirts and 3 Trousers

  • Paramedic students: Safety boots, Helmet, Hi-Vis soft shell jacket, Hi-Vis jerkin, soft shell jacket, Bomber jacket, Trouser, T-shirt & short sleeved shirt

  • ODP students: 1 set scrubs for clinical skills lab, scrubs provided in practice for daily use

Deviations from this uniform will only be considered under certain circumstances where full written evidence of need for an alternative uniform can be provided.

Apprenticeship students will be issued uniform by their employer.

Laundering Uniforms

Uniforms become increasingly contaminated with bacteria, including antibiotic resistant strains throughout the span of duty. Levels of contamination will increase with extended use; therefore, uniforms worn more than once will become an increased risk for cross infection.

It is expected that the student should change the student uniform on a daily basis whilst on placement. If, however, the student uniform becomes contaminated with blood or body fluids whilst on duty, it should be changed immediately.

To prevent the risk of cross contamination the following measures should be adopted as good practice to minimise the risk:

  •  Uniforms should be washed in a domestic washing machine without other items of clothing at a minimum of 50° centigrade if the material does not allow for washing at higher temperatures, but at 60-65° centigrade if uniform materials allows in a domestic washing machine.

  • Uniforms should preferably be tumbled dried.

  • Dried uniforms should be ironed with a hot iron.

  • Uniforms should be stored folded flat in a fresh unused plastic bag and sealed.

  • Wash hands before changing into the uniform for duty to minimise contamination.

  • WCs and bathrooms will increase the risk of uniforms becoming contaminated; therefore, these areas should not be used as changing rooms.

Replacement Uniforms

If a student become pregnant Brook Hub admin office (BB204) should be approached who will arrange for appropriate uniforms to be issued.

If a student experiences changes in weight or a uniform is in a state of disrepair, then the student will be expected to purchase replacement uniforms directly from the Uniform suppliers. Order forms can be supplied by the WBLTeam by either calling into Brook Hub (BB204) or emailing WBLTeam.

On completion of a programme students should destroy their uniform ensuring that the UCLan logo is removed before disposal.