Over the last decade we have clearly seen the effect of texting and driving. This is evident through the laws and regulations we have been attempting to pass. It’s also evident through the number of deaths we have seen. How about texting and surgery? Do you know what your physician is doing when you are knocked out during a surgery or other medical procedures, most of us don’t.
Perfusionists, the individual responsible to run the heart-lung machines during heart bypass surgery in addition to other OR staff stated they have actively texted, emailed, or used their mobile device during a medical procedure, additionally 80% said that cell phones could pose a significant safety risk to patients.
In addition to the lack of focus and attention there is also a large concern of the possibility of bacterial infections from the contamination present on mobile devices, such equipment can cause interference with medical equipment. In a recent study it was discovered even though operating room staff used hand sanitizers over the course of time, it was discovered that their phones still had critical pathogens on them.
This is a serious issue that is now starting to be addressed, As a result of these findings in addition to other information the nation’s nurse anesthetists came out with a new policy urging operating room staff to use their mobile devices sole for the practice of medicine only.
Before you go into surgery it may not be a bad thing to asks that your staff to only use their mobile device for medically related issues. Will adhere to your requests?