IN AN EFFORT to curb medical errors, hospitals have spent a great deal of money on computers, cell phones, and other electronic devices so health care providers have instant access to patient data, drug information, or medical reference material. Unfortunately, like many innovations, this solution has come with an unintended downside—health care providers focusing on electronic devices and away from the patient. It also allows health care providers to do non-work-related tasks, such as texting friends, answering personal e-mails, or surfing the Web, even during moments of critical care. A new study has been published showing that half of health care workers running bypass machines admitted texting while performing cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB;
Smith et al., 2011). This phenomenon has set off discussions in many medical settings of a problem, which has been described as “distracted doctoring.” In response, some hospitals have begun limiting the use of electronic devices in critical settings, and some nursing schools have started reminding students to focus on patients instead of devices, even as they are being handed more electronic tools. Among the respondents, 36.1% reported having a hospital policy regarding cell phone use, whereas 16.4% had a department policy.
- Smith T.
- Darling E.
- Y Searles B.
2010 survey on cell phone use while performing cardiopulmonary bypass.
Perfusion. 2011; 26: 375-380
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- 2010 survey on cell phone use while performing cardiopulmonary bypass.Perfusion. 2011; 26: 375-380
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Published online: March 05, 2012Deborah L. McBride, MSN, RN, CPN, CPON, CCRN
© 2012 Elsevier Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.