Mobile Devices Distracting in the Examination Room

April 10, 2012
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Everyone loves to have the latest technology – it’s fun to play with iPhones and iPads and explore all they can do. Of course, this technology can be distracting in our daily lives. And when it’s used by physicians in hospitals, such distractions can affect patient safety. iphone in OR

Everyone loves to have the latest technology – it’s fun to play with iPhones and iPads and explore all they can do. Of course, this technology can be distracting in our daily lives. And when it’s used by physicians in hospitals, such distractions can affect patient safety. iphone in OR

Many doctors love their smartphones or tablets. They can sit by a patient’s bedside to record information rather than going back to their offices. This new process speeds everything up and allows doctors to be in front of more patients. Tablets and smartphones are also helpful to the patients – patients and family members can be shown drawings, photos and videos at their bedside to see what’s going to take place before the actual procedure is underway.

But with all this technology can come distraction. Mobile devices can do so much at once, including text, web surfing, phone calls and email access, that one alert can distract the doctor from the reason they’re using the mobile device in the first place.

As a result, many hospitals are working to implement new policies on how mobile devices can be used in examination and operating rooms.