Skip to main content


Aug 02, 2011 10:15PM ● Published by Anonymous

A debate has been raging for years about whether or not it is safe to use a cell phone in a hospital for fear that it might disrupt sensitive medical equipment. Recently, however, many hospitals have loosened their restrictions about cell phone use within hospital walls. But now there is a new, disturbing reason to leave the phone in the car.

According to a study published, in the June issue of the American Journal of Infection Control, the official publication of the Association of Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC), found that cell phones used by patients and their visitors were twice as likely to contain potentially dangerous bacteria as those of healthcare workers.

Two hundred mobile phones were cultured for the study, 67 of which belonged to medical employees and 133 to patients, patients’ companions and visitors. The researchers found that 39.6 percent of the patient group phones and 20.6 percent of the healthcare workers’ phones tested positive for pathogens. Even worse, seven of the patient phones contained multidrug resistant (MDR) pathogens such as MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus). No staff cell phones tested positive for MDR pathogens.

“The types of bacteria that were found on the patients’ mobile phones and their resistance pattern were very worrisome,”
state the authors of the study. “Some investigators have reported that mobile phones of medical personnel may be a potential source of bacteria pathogens in the hospital setting. Our finding suggest that mobile phones of patients, patients companions and visitors represent higher risk for nosocomial pathogen colonization that those of the healthcare workers. Specific infection control measures may be required for this threat.”

Hospital-acquired infections cause 1.7 million infections a year and are associated with approximately 100,000 deaths. It is estimated that one third of these infections could be prevented by adhering to standard infection control guidelines.

This information comes as no surprise to one of our co-workers here at What’s Up? Media. His newborn child recently spent several months in the Johns Hopkins NICU…where cell phone use is prohibited because of the threat of germs.


The Look thrive
  • Blazers. Bourbon. Cigars

    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Join Historic Annapolis at the William Paca House and Garden for the original premiere Gentlemen'...

  • Clays 4 A Cause


    New venue this year! Come test your aim at this sporting clays events at Shrader’s Bridgtown Mano...

  • Wine on the Beach

    11:00AM — 07:00PM

    Rediscover the best of Maryland fare at Wine on the Beach, a celebration of the burgeoning wine i...

  • Easton Airport Day

    10:00AM — 02:00PM

    Look out below! It’s a rubber chicken bomb! On Saturday, September 30th, 10 a.m.–2 p.m. at Easton...

  • Wine on the Beach

    11:00AM — 07:00PM

    Rediscover the best of Maryland fare at Wine on the Beach, a celebration of the burgeoning wine i...

  • Hope Re-Imagined: Esperida

    06:30PM — 10:30PM

    Ancient Greeks recognized that community members experiencing mental illness need healing care an...

  • The fourth annual Anne Arundel County Lifeline100 Bicycle Event hosted by Anne Arundel County Pol...



Towne Social