Cell phones emit radio frequencies that can disrupt medical care by interfering with electronic equipment. They can activate or turn off alarms on monitors, cause ventilators to shut down or deliver the wrong amount of gas, or cause infant warmers and incubators to overheat.
Use of cell phones and portable two-way radios (except approved in-house devices) is prohibited in the following areas of the hospital:
- Patient rooms in the Critical Care Unit (CCU)
- Patient rooms in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU)
- The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
- Patient rooms in the Neuroscience Critical Care Unit (NCCU)
- Patient rooms in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit (SICU)
- Patient rooms and bays with a patient on ventilator
Even while in stand-by mode, cell phones emit frequencies; therefore, they should be turned off completely when in the prohibited areas.