Why Do Nurses Need Fob Watches?

Are you curious about why nurses wear fob watches and what are they all about? Whether you are an aspiring nurse or just curious about this weird timepiece that you only see nurses and old-school gentlemen wear, this is the article for you. We’ll first explain what nurse watches are, why they are invaluable for all nurses and why nurses still wear fob watches over wristwatches.

What is a nurse watch?

Fob watches, also known as medical watches, are nurses’ and other medical professionals’ standard of choice when it comes to timepieces. Unlike a traditional wristwatch, nurse fob watches are placed on the pocket or collar of uniforms or scrubs and hang upside down. You can think of them as a pocket watch designed to clip onto clothing and be inverted. Invented shortly after the first pocket watch was developed, nurse fob watches were a traditional graduation or first job present from the family of a new nurse.

4 reasons why nurses wear fob watches over wristwatches 

So now that you know what a nurse fob watch is, you’ll likely be wondering why do nurses still wear fob watches instead of more modern wristwatches. Here are the four main reasons why:

  1. Hygiene — First and foremost, medical professionals are required to uphold the highest level of hygiene and cleanliness. With their hands being the part of their body most likely to pick up bacteria and viruses as they touch the patients and the surfaces and instruments of their trade, watches are perilously close to this area of concern. A nurse watch, on the other hand, is securely removed from making contact with anything else but the scrubs it’s clipped on, and it doesn’t need any handling to read the time as it’s conveniently hanging upside down on the wearer’s chest.
  2. Concentration — With the requirement to take many time measurements during their shifts, wristwatches may not be the best choice for nurses. In fact, having to turn their wrist to read the time may mean that, for a few seconds, that hand isn’t being used effectively. When time is of the essence, and so is accuracy and effectiveness, an always-visible timekeeping device like a nurse fob watch is much preferable.
  3. Regulations — Although it isn’t a nationally-set rule, many hospitals and health care organisations follow the “bare below the elbow” rule. In practice, it forbids medical staff from wearing jewellery, watches, bracelets and anything else from the elbow to the fingers. There are many reasons behind this regulation, from hygiene to patient’s safety, staff’s focus and privacy. A medical watch for nurses allows them to adhere to this rule whilst still having reliable and independent access to the time.
  4. Ease of use — Nursing can be a very fast-paced profession. When alarms go off, and lives are at stake, knowing how many seconds have elapsed by simply glancing down can make a world of difference. Instead of having to stop using a hand for a few seconds to see the time on a wristwatch or searching a room for a clock, a nurse watch is easy to read, convenient to use, hand-free and always visible.

Why do nurses wear watches?

Okay, you might be thinking that yes, medical watches for nurses sound like the better choice out of the two, but does a nurse need a watch in the first place? After all, hospitals and medical centres always have wall-mounted clocks everywhere, and most of us always have our phones nearby, not to mention TVs, microwaves and other timekeeping devices present in almost any room. So why do nurses wear watches in the first place?

While some nurses don’t wear watches anymore, the majority still prefer to have secured and guaranteed access to accurate measurements. In their day-to-day life, medical practitioners need access to a watch with minutes and seconds to:

  • Take timed measurements and vital sign recordings
  • Check the time to be on time for appointments, breaks and other rostering schedules
  • Know the right time to push med
  • Effectively manage their time and day
  • Fill out documentation and patient charts

Choosing the best medical watches for nurses

Now that you know both why nurses need a watch and why many prefer to wear fob watches, you might be left with one last question, “which nurse fob watch is the best to buy?”. Whether you are a young nurse looking for yourself or want to spoil a recent nursing graduate, we have a couple of suggestions and advice to help you find the perfect medical watch for a nurse.

First of all, make sure that the nurse fob watch you are looking at displays the seconds, either on a digital screen or with a third hand if it’s an analog fob watch. It’s also important to only shop from reputable sellers you can trust, like eNurse — knowing the correct time can be, quite literally, a matter of life or death in the nursing profession. Lastly, pick something you or your gift recipient will love! Nurses’ fob watches are, more often than not, the only touch of personalisation they are allowed to display on their uniforms. From the serious and timeless look of a metal fob watch to the fun and colourful patterns of certain silicone fob watches, select a nurse watch that will let your personality shine through. 

Take a look at the eNurse range of nurse fob watches

We hope this blog has clarified any question you may have had about nurses fob watches and solved your curiosity. If you are looking for a high-quality, accurate and stylish medical watch for nurses, then head over to our watches selection to find just the right timepiece for your needs. With one of the largest selections of watches and nursing accessories in Australia, and fresh-off-the-shelf new arrivals updating regularly, there is no better place to shop than eNurse.

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