ANCHOR LEAD: JOHNS HOPKINS HOSPITAL HAS STOPPED USING LATEX GLOVES, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Latex gloves were developed by Johns Hopkins surgeon William Halsted in the late 1800’s. Now latex gloves have been banished at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Julie Freischlag, chief of surgery, explains why.
FREISCHLAG: We have found over the years that there is an increased number of people with latex allergies, and what that means is they can actually have anaphylaxis, where they stop breathing, can have major reactions to it, and then once they get a reaction they’re allergic to latex everywhere, not only in the hospital but in toy stores, department stores, and it actually alters their life and is a great safety issue in the hospital. So we decided to go latex free, not only to protect the patients with allergies but to prevent others from getting them in the future. :30
Frieschlag expects other hospitals and healthcare facilities to soon follow suit, since comparable gloves of non-allergenic materials exist. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.