Distracted Midwifing / Smartphone Use
Subsections on this page:
Practice and Patient Safety: The Healthcare Team Experience.
Nurs Forum. 2017 Jul;52(3):149-164. doi: 10.1111/nuf.12173. Epub
2016 Jul 19.
Distracted practice is an individual human experience that occurs
when there are not enough cognitive resources available to
effectively complete the task at hand. In that moment an individual
shifts from thinking critically, being able to complete their
current task without error, to not thinking critically and working
in an automatic mode. This is when errors occur. Understanding the
role of distracted practice is essential for reducing errors and
improving the quality of care. Additional research is needed to
evaluate intervention strategies to reduce distracted practice.
Doctors Linked to Medical Errors [12/23/11] By Andrew Chow,
Recent studies have diagnosed a growing problem in operating rooms:
Distracted doctors and surgical staff are often texting or surfing
the web while performing patient procedures. It's led to medical
errors and lawsuits.
"My gut feeling is lives are in danger," a doctor and author of one
of the studies told The New York Times. "We're not educating people
about the problem, and it's getting worse."
Cell Phones Belong In The Operating Room? [from Kaiser
7/14/15] by Shefali Luthra [reproduced
In interviews, many described co-workers’ texting friends and
relatives from the surgical suite.
“Once we get into or start using our cellphones, we separate
ourselves from the reality of where we are,” he said. “It’s
self-evident: If you’re staring at a phone, you’re not staring at
cellphones may lead to medical errors in operating rooms [from
a medical malpractice firm] - They discuss the risk of infection,
but the focus is on distraction and medical errors: "Perhaps of even
greater concern, however, is the potential for medical professionals
to become distracted by the use of cellphones in the operating room
which may lead to medical errors."
Can Cell Phone Use by Medical Personnel Increase Patient Safety?
[2/15/06] by Jennifer Anderson - this study is mostly about the fact
that cellphones avoid the slight delay (2-3 minutes) inherent in the
pager system and the time required to return the page via
phone. This is very relevant to anesthesiologists working in
the hospital environment, but not so much to homebirth midwives.
Cell phones reduce medical errors [2/2/06] - this looks like a
review of the same study as above, saying that it makes healthcare
and I'm guessing this is the actual study that the above two
articles are based on.
devices in the operating room.
Curr Opin Anaesthesiol. 2006 Dec;19(6):655-9.
Anesthesiologists rely on a wide variety of information to make
decisions, including vital signs, laboratory values, and entries in
the medical record. Devices such as PDAs and computers with wireless
networking can be used to access this information. Mobile telephones
can be used to get help or ask for advice, and are more efficient
than radio pagers. Voice over Internet protocol is a new technology
that allows voice conversations to be routed over computer networks.
It is widely believed that wireless devices can cause
life-threatening interference with medical devices. The actual risk
is very low, and is offset by a significant reduction in medical
errors that results from more efficient communication.
Using common technology like cellular telephones and wireless
networks is a simple, cost-effective way to improve patient