The nurse who ran the scrub marathon was denied Guinness record for not wearing a gown

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By Chaunie Brusie

Nurse Jessica Anderson changed the world. Not really.

In April, Anderson broke the current world record in the “wearing a nurse’s uniform” category at the London Marathon, with a time of 3:08:22 “, to break the previous record of 3:08:54”. Not only did she land a world record, but she did so in a pair of scrubs, wearing the actual work uniform she dons during her shifts as a nurse in the acute admissions unit of the Royal London Hospital, where she has been employed for seven years.

And of course, because nurses can do anything, Anderson ran in a lab coat, broke a world record, and managed to raise over £ 5,000 for his cause, Barts Charity. Guinness World Records, however, had other ideas and stripped Anderson of his world record title. Why? Well, because she wore gowns instead of a “traditional” nurse’s uniform.

What is a nurse according to the previous Guinness rules

In an Instagram post in February, Anderson explained that she contacted Guinness to ask to participate in the race while wearing scrubs as a uniform rather than the “traditional” nurse’s uniform they needed. And if you’re wondering what qualifies as a “traditional” nurse uniform, think of all the horrible stereotypical “sexy” or “ugly” Halloween nurse costumes you’ve ever seen. MAJOR #eyeroll.

Image via Instagram

The agency, however, declined her candidacy and said the scrubs (somehow?) She vowed to run anyway and break the record.

Which she did, of course. But she didn’t expect what was to come: instead of acknowledging her victory or congratulating her on her incredible beauty, Guinness World Records denied Anderson the world record title. Understandably disappointed, Anderson said The runner’s world that she was “quite confused” by the organization’s decision.

“… I emailed them asking them to reconsider their decision, but they said no,” she told the magazine. “I understand it’s supposed to be a fun thing, but their definition is so outdated. Some of the nurses I work with wear dresses, but most of the time we wear scrubs or a tunic and pants. I have certainly never seen a nurse wearing a robe to work. “

She told the BBC that Guinness responded with an email describing the ‘appropriate’ nursing uniform to wear during a race,

“The nurse’s uniform should include a blue or white nurse’s gown, white apron, traditional white nurse’s cap,” the Guinness World Records email read. They went on to say that the scrub costume was very similar to a doctor’s uniform and that it was important to differentiate the two professions.

We imagine something like this would have been more appropriate for Jessica to introduce herself… according to Guinness.

Nurses who support theirs

As you can imagine, the organization’s decision to redact Anderson’s title purely on the basis of his attire didn’t work out so well with uh, anyone. Nurses and fans around the world have expressed outrage that the organization deprives a deserving runner of her record and promotes an outdated dress code steeped in historic sexism.

“As a member of a group that won and broke two new world records with my former IHS colleagues in 2018, I am ashamed to see Guinness World Records meet such outdated standards,” wrote a disgusted commentator in response. “I challenge this organization to set a better example for strong women of the next generation and our future leaders. I strongly urge you to honor the accomplishments of this nurse and leave the sexism of the past in its place. “

To support Anderson, who shared his own photo of his world record-winning run in his scrubs, the nurses shared their own images wearing their real work uniforms with the hashtag #What nurses wear.

The soldiers posted pictures of themselves in full uniform, pointing out, sarcastically, that dresses may not be the most practical choice for them to do their jobs. “I save whatever uniform I wear” wrote another proud nurse. “On duty or on leave.” I am a proud professional nurse. # Whatnurseswear ”

Changing the rules and the record at Guinness World Records

Fortunately, for everyone involved, the official people who make Guinness World Records changed their minds and issued a press release on Monday, May 7, explaining that they had changed their stance and would recognize Anderson’s title:

“Over the weekend, it became quite clear to Guinness World Records that our guidelines for the fastest marathon in nurse’s uniform were outdated, incorrect and reflected a stereotype that we in no way wish to perpetuate,” says the press release. “Having received the official London Marathon times this morning, we are pleased to award Jessica the Guinness World Records title for the fastest marathon in nursing uniform for her attempt on Sunday April 28 (3 hours, 8 minutes and 22 seconds), and to have notified it as such.

“I want to take this opportunity to reassure all concerned that Guinness World Records is absolutely committed to ensuring that we meet the highest standards of equality and inclusion. Therefore, we wholeheartedly apologize and accept the entire responsibility for the mismanagement of Jessica Anderson’s candidacy. ”

Additionally, the powers that be have also promised to update their guidelines to truly reflect the actual work uniforms worn by nurses in the UK and around the world.

Anderson’s story is proof of several things, including

1) nurses are a game changer

2) Scrubs are so awesome you can save lives or run marathons in them.

Image via Instagram

And if you ask us, Anderson has always held the record in our books. Because as the saying goes, a nurse is a nurse no matter what she wears.

Or something like that.



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