Smartphone Use in the Emergency Department

Kerry E. Walker


Smartphones, belonging to patients and physicians, are increasingly prevalent in Emergency Departments. These phones have tremendous clinical and educational potential through the use of recording tools, clinical applications, and information search engines. When using smartphones in the Emergency Department, users must respect the privacy and confidentiality of those around them and refrain from disrupting others or spreading infection. Reviewing current policies and guidelines reveals no consensus regarding smartphone use in the Emergency Department. The Canadian Medical Protective Association offers suggestions regarding consent, documentation, and protection of information that are of substantial use to the clinician.

KEYWORDS: health attitudes; cellular phone; hospital emergency services; mobile technology; hospital policy

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Walker KE. Smartphone Use in the Emergency Department. UBCMJ. 2014 5(2):24-25.