Crocs, the rubbery, clog-like shoes, have been deemed inappropriate footwear for workers in patient-care areas at a hospital.

Holes that ventilate the shoes pose a safety hazard, said Sharon Krystofiak, Mercy Hospital's infection control manager.

"If there's a chance you could drop something like a syringe in one of them, we want to avoid that," Krystofiak said. "Some of those holes are relatively large, almost like a dime."

Mercy nurse Kara Depasquale, 23, was wearing Crocs on Monday, when the policy went into effect. She called it ridiculous.

"I mean, I can get a needle stuck in my arm or my leg," Depasquale said. "I work 12-hour shifts, and I'm constantly on my feet."

Crocs, based in Niwot, Colo., about 30 miles north of Denver, sells shoes in at least 80 countries.