Congratulations, smartphones! You finally made the Top 10 Health Technology Hazards list this year. The list is an annual compilation of the top hazards caused by technology used in health care, based on the prevalence and severity of incidents reported to the ECRI Institute, a non-profit patient safety organization. The most common hazards on the list include dangers like radiation burns during diagnostic radiology procedures, or surgical fires, or patient monitoring alarms that fail to go off.
But for the first time ever, “caregiver distraction from smartphones and other mobile devices” has made this Top 10 list of patient safety hazards. I’d offer up a high five here, but your hands might be otherwise occupied until you distracted health care providers learn how to put down the damned phone while you’re supposed to be caring for your patients. Continue reading