National Healthcare Uniform Workforce Consultation


The National Healthcare Uniform Project is a proposal put forward by NHS Supply Chain: Hotel Services to introduce a nationally standardised uniform across the NHS in England.

A national uniform will offer a strong national identity and utilise the buying power of the NHS by delivering cost savings.

Originally launched in the summer of 2019, the project was paused during 2020 due to more important priorities relating to the pandemic. The initial reaction to the proposal from both patients and healthcare professionals appears to be positive.

*Please note pictures are for illustrative purposes only.

Nurse with Child Patient
Nurse Smiling in Healthcare Setting
Nurse, Doctor and Patient

We want to hear your voice and understand your requirements for a uniform that is fit for purpose, practical and comfortable to wear.

*Please note that pictures used with this information are for illustrative purposes only – they are not part of the consultation or specifically representative of any particular uniform types under consideration.

An opportunity to have your say

Understanding our customers’ needs and feeding this into the design of a National Healthcare Uniform is essential to the success of this project.

The consultation questions cover two main areas:

  1. Whether you agree with a national uniform approach
  2. The garment styles and features you require for a uniform to be considered well designed and fit for purpose.

We are asking you to complete this brief questionnaire with your thoughts and opinions – and to share the link with as many of your healthcare colleagues as possible.

Please take this opportunity to share your view.

Our aims for a National Healthcare Uniform

Following initial engagement with a variety of stakeholders, customers, and staff representative groups we understand that a national healthcare uniform must:

  • Be fit for purpose.
  • Easy to wear and smart, but comfortable.
  • Present a friendly and approachable image to a wide range of patients and visitors including children, the elderly, those with mental health needs and in the wider community.
  • Reflect the diversity of the NHS workforce whilst maintaining staff identity and the strict infection control standards.
  • Remain in good condition during long and difficult working patterns and offer options reflecting the changing environment in hospitals and care environments.
  • Have well thought out and appropriate features such as lighter materials, safe and ample pockets.
  • Be available in a wide range of sizes.
  • Be easy to care for and launder to retain professional appearance for several years.

Our goal is to deliver a fully sustainable framework including ethical sourcing and sustainable end-of-use options for old uniforms.

Patient and Visitor Feedback

The engagement carried out so far shows that patients and visitors are in favour of a national approach.

Infographic showing results of independent survey

An independent survey commissioned by NHS Supply Chain: Hotel Services across several NHS trusts has shown:

  • 88% of patients think that the same uniforms should be worn nationally.
  • 79% of patients think that a strongly defined uniform helps them to identify key workers.
  • 55% of patients were unable to easily identify senior members of staff from their uniforms.