A question I am frequently asked is “what do you keep in your scrub pockets during your shift?”

I used to keep them full just in case I needed something.  I used to have any and everything in there.  I have since figured out that my scrub pockets are prime real estate.  Only the most important and frequently used items go in there now.

What Nurses Actually Need at Work

I always have these items on me at all times:

My stethoscope around my neck with my name engraved on it.  If you stole it, I will find you.

A roll of clear tape.  It’s the type I use most frequently and I keep it around an ear of my stethoscope.  I’ll toss it and get a new one if lint gets all on the sides because ew – gross.

One clicky pen.  Pens with caps = pens that are crap.

My penlight from Auto Zone.  I don’t screw around with crappy penlights.  It’s the real deal baby!

One stack of alcohol swabs in my left pants pocket.  I go through at least 20/day and always need them when I can’t reach the nurse server.

My report sheets folded in fourths and in my back right pocket.  Always gotta know where those brains are, nurses!

A tube of lip balm.  Gotta take care of those lips – I want a good smooch from my husband when I get home (#yum).

One pair of scissors.  I use the scissors that we have at the hospital.  Don’t buy them – you’ll lose them and be mad.  And sometimes they just need to be tossed and not cleaned.  I’ve always liked the ones the hospital ones better anyway.  They’re small and lightweight and I don’t feel bad about tossing them when they’ve lived their last day.

A list of frequently called numbers that I do not have memorized is folded in my badge holder.

A small black Sharpie on a key ring on my badge holder.

And that’s all folks!  Flushes, hemostats, different kinds of tape, etc. are all things that I do not need weighing me down!  I can get to them quickly regardless of where I am, so therefore they do not need to be taking up my million dollar real estate in my pockets!