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The big question: should hospital nurses be banned from using their mobile phones on wards?


Results from Nursing Times’ annual survey have revealed that the majority of nurses believe staff should not be allowed to use their mobile phones on wards.

More and more health professionals have access to a smartphone that could potentially help with drug calculations and other clinical information, as well as communication with colleagues. However, they also pose a distraction from patient care and possibly an infection control risk.

Of the 2,147 survey respondents who answered a question on the issue, 57% said hospital staff should not be allowed to use their own mobile phone on the wards. This compared to 26% who thought it was OK and 17% who said they were “unsure”.

What do you think?


Readers' comments (5)

  • I accept that it would be useful for nurses to be able to look up clinical queries for patient care during working hours but it is not appropriate for nurses to be making or taking personal calls during working hours on duty while in a patient care setting, the home or the ward or clinic. There is a risk that the patients will be ignored and the nurse distracted. This is seen often out side hospital where people ignore their company to concentrate of playing with their latest devices.
    Very rude and a bit nerdy!

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  • It's very useful to use the mobile phones calculator to check drug calculations, and check information from websites including the BNF, Royal marsden etc, however personal calls can be a nuisance, but so to is the ward mobile phone that is held by the person in charge of the shift. It is frequently called by site managers, matrons, other wards and specialist units at other hospitals.

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  • How did we manage before mobiles were invented? We did our own calculations and learned things from books. Strangely enough we didn't kill anybody!

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  • Strangely enough you did kill people ! But there was less transparency and public knowledge.

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  • Not banned from using phones, but they certainly should be banned from sitting around making personal calls in work time!

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