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Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 September 2007, 10:12 GMT 11:12 UK
Health bosses step into Crocs row
Generic picture of Crocs-style shoes
Hospital officials are reviewing the dress code
Hospital officials in South Yorkshire are considering a ban on staff wearing Crocs shoes.

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said it is in talks with unions and governors about changing its dress code policy.

Hospitals in Sweden had previously banned the footwear claiming it created static electricity.

Crocs shoes said the claims were unfounded, but are investigating.

The trust said there had been no incidents of a build up of static electricity interfering with medical equipment caused by wearing the shoes.

The dress code for staff working for the trust states that shoes must be black, clean, low-heeled, soft-soled and supportive.

The policy had evolved around principles of preventing and controlling infection, health and safety and maintaining a professional image, a trust spokesman said.

Crocs are available in 17 different colours and are made from a resin which the manufacturers say resists bacteria and odour.

It is unlikely that any one factor is the sole cause
Crocs shoes spokeswoman

Deputy chief nurse Richard Parker, from Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, said: "We are aware that some of our staff prefer to wear Croc-type footwear.

"We are working closely with union representatives and our Governors' Council, which includes patients, staff and members of the public, to discuss this further.

"We will thoroughly consider all aspects of infection prevention and control, health and safety, and professional image if our dress code policy is to change."

A spokeswoman for Crocs shoes said allegations that the rubber shoes generated static electricity were unfounded but they were investigating to make sure their product was suitable for medical staff.

She said: "There are a number of factors that contribute to the build-up of static electricity, including temperature, humidity, flooring applications, types of material and the nature of the contact, so it is unlikely that any one factor is the sole cause.

"We know of no reason that Crocs would be any more susceptible to static electricity than other shoes, such as sneakers and other types of footwear worn by medical professionals."

She added that hospitals in Sweden recently reversed their decision to ban Crocs from their wards.




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