December 28, 2011
January 5, 2012
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Nurses get a makeover


Hospitals making them undergo grooming & etiquette courses

Kounteya Sinha | TNN

New Delhi: Nurses in India are getting an image makeover. To do away with their quintessential image of being stern and snappy, hospitals across the nation are making them go through grooming courses

Columbia Asia, a chain of hospitals, has hired a professional etiquette consultant associated with Miss India pageants to teach their nurses “empathy, etiquette and style”.

Other hospitals like Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute (RGCI), Fortis, Artemis and Raheja too are following suit. Nurses are being taught what would be the right shade of lipstick to wear and how to tie up their hair.

“Nothing shiny like a lip gloss, as one should not look suggestive. Shades of lipstick should be neutral shades, preferably mat,” they are being told. The grooming sessions include teaching them how to greet, talk and address patients.

They are being told to do away with “the coconut oil and coloured ribbons on their hair” and look graceful. Also not to talk in their native language in front of patients, not to eat onions for lunch, know patients by their names and not by bed numbers and maintain the highest levels of personal hygiene.

For instance, Artemis Health Institute in Gurgaon has a centrally air-conditioned nurses hostel in the campus with a beauty parlour in it, where they are taught how to apply make up, manage body odour, do up hair and maintain personal hygiene.

Dr Devlina Chakravarty, medical director of Artemis, told TOI that “During induction, the nurses are given a kit with oils, shampoos, soaps and perfumes they need to use besides teaching them communication skills. Every nursing day, we give out awards like nurse with best bed-side manners, most popular and most smiling nurse. They are then sent for a free trip to south-east Asian countries for three nights and four days. At present, 40 nurses have been chosen for a trip to Thailand.”

Rita Gangwani, who has groomed several participants for Miss India/Miss Bhutan pageants, is now training Columbia Asia nurses. She said India has the best nurses as far as “doing their job is concerned”, but they lack in communication skills.

She said, “As most nurses are from Kerala, they tend to talk in their native language in front of patients which can make them jittery. These week-long grooming sessions are teaching them how they should talk in a language everybody can understand, smile while talking to patients, be polite and be aware of the patient’s name rather than bed number.”

Hospital To Hospitality

Consultants teaching nurses “empathy, etiquette and style” Nurses taught what lipstick to wear, how to tie up their hair Grooming sessions on how to greet, address patients Told to ‘know patients by names and not by bed numbers’ Told to do away with ‘coconut oil, coloured ribbons in hair’ Told not to talk in their native language in front of patients

If you would like to enhance your professional or social etiquettes manners and personal presentation, please connect at

Disclaimer: This article appeared in Times of India dated 4th January2012 and is written by the author mention in the article, I have not written the same and claim no right to it. I have re-posted the article for general consumption and understanding

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