Medical Patient Modesty - a non-profit organization to improve patient modesty in medical settings


Tips For Nurses

As a nurse, you should do whatever you can to protect patients' modesty and dignity. Many patients value modesty. Think about how you would feel if you had to strip naked in front of a bunch of people. Listen to patients' concerns about modesty carefully and work hard to meet their wishes. Many people don't feel comfortable having certain parts of their body exposed to the opposite sex except for spouse. They are not crazy. Many people would not be comfortable using public restrooms with people of the opposite sex. Do not take it personally. Many patients who are modest welcome care from opposite sex nurses for procedures that do not involve handling or exposure of private parts. One man shared that he would prefer a male nurse with a little experience than a female nurse who had 30 years of experience for intimate procedures. The number one priority should be the patient and the number two priority should be the patient's family. Listen to their wishes for modesty and work to accommodate them.

If a male patient requests an all male nursing team for surgery, please work hard to accommodate his wish. You should allow the patient to wear as much as he can. For example, there is no reason for a person to take his/her underwear off for many types of surgeries. One man had a wrist reconstruction surgery with his pants left on. There is no need to catheterize a person for many surgeries such as knee, wrist, etc. Be sure you ask a male patient if he wants a male nurse for intimate procedures such as catheterization. Be sensitive to a male patient if he says no that he doesn’t want a female nurse to do intimate procedures on him such as urinary catheterization or give him bath.

If a female patient requests an all female medical team for surgery, please work hard to accommodate her wish. Be sure you ask her if she wishes for a female nurse to do intimate procedures on her such as prepping her for surgery and catheterization. Let her wear as much as possible. There is no need to take underwear off for many surgeries.

Work hard to drape people's bodies so private parts would not be exposed necessarily. We encourage you to let spouses in room during intimate procedures if the spouse wishes.

Keep the doors closed when you do an intimate procedure or prepping. Never walk in a room that is closed because the doctor may be doing some intimate procedure. Be sure you ask the doctor what he/she is doing before entering in a room.


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