TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: What Happened to Me

Re: What Happened to Me

T (
Sat, 8 Apr 2006 23:40:59 -0400

In article <>,

> You know of course that the cell phone system in Europe is different
> from the US. Here, there are signs at the front door of all hospitals
> (and in many places inside) saying 'Mobile phones MUST be switched
> off'. The idea is that they can interfere with various medical
> equipment. I don't know if that is true, or if it is like the
> prohibition on airplanes -- but in any case, that's the rule. And most
> people follow it.

> Having said that -- my wife is a nurse and in her hospital the staff
> do have cell phones. They are called DECT and apparently they use a
> sub-set of the frequency band that is sure to not conflict with all
> the monitors, analyzers, etc. in the building.

> Can the public use their own personal mobile phones in American
> hospitals?

Interesting. I recently had to visit my ailing grandmother in the
intensive care unit of a local hospital. No warnings about cell phones
and in fact saw staff use them.

So I'd say yes, we can use our cell phones in hospitals.

In article <>, news22 says:

> John McHarry wrote:

>> On Thu, 06 Apr 2006 17:29:21 -0400, TELECOM Digest Editor wrote:

>>> I knew I had _something_ still wrong with me when I came back from
>>> Jane Phillips Medical Center in Bartlesville, but I attributed it to
>>> continued weakness from the heart attack. I still had very labored
>>> breathing, (sort of an emphsezma/COPT condition) and was using oxygen
>>> when I slept at night. But I _assumed_ it was all under control. It
>>> now appears I had pneumonia when I was admitted to Jane Phillips;
>>> Mercy Hospital (here in Independence) had assumed I would stay in JP
>>> until all was cured; JP on the other hand wanted to first deal with my
>>> heart attack (and the stent they put in me) as the first priority,
>>> then they sent me back home figuring I would deal with the pneumonia
>>> on an outpatient basis with Mercy.

>> If the system you describe in Independence were linked with the
>> Bartlesville system, presuming they have one, that wouldn't have
>> happened. Information handling in medicine is really culpably poor.

>>> OB-TELECOM and MERCY HOSPITAL DATACOM: _Everything_ at Mercy Hospital
>>> is computerized. Everytime a human being came into my room to
>>> variously change the antibiotic bag or feed me some pills or pound my
>>> back or for that matter to dump my piss-pot urinal in the toilet they
>>> would make entries on a lap top computer they brought with them and
>>> plugged into a connection in my room.

>>> ...and he said among other things, it did remove
>>> the possibility of 'human error' in noting the administration of
>>> drugs to the patients, etc.

>> It certainly reduces it, but I don't believe it eliminates it. Let's also
>> hope they have the system properly backed up and decoupled from any
>> Internet access.

>>> Not a single _wired_ phone where staff is concerned. Patient phones
>>> were wired, of course, but every staff person had a cellular phone.
>>> They called them 'hospital phones', and claimed they were on a
>>> different frequency than cellular; to me they just appeared to be
>>> cellular phones, and not their personal cells either. They would
>>> answer them _by their department name_ even when in patient rooms. On
>>> the roof of the main hospital building here and there I would see
>>> little antennas stuck around everywhere, that is what they worked
>>> with I guess.

>> It doesn't sound like the building is very tall, but if it is one of
>> the taller structures in the area, it may well rent out antenna
>> space. Also hospitals tend to have pager systems, links with various
>> other emergency services, etc. The few of them I have been on the roof
>> of had fairly impressive antenna farms.

>>> Even though these 'hospital' (really cellular?) phones
>>> looked and acted like cell phones in general, I noticed that when
>>> they had occassion to call another employee or department they only
>>> punched out four digits as though it was an extension.

>> That could work either way. It is possible for cellular systems to
>> implement Centrex groups with internal dialing plans.

>>> Dr. Higknight's phone was the same way, four digits dialed got him
>>> the intake department across the street at the hospital, and '9' got
>>> him an outside line. His phone was a 'hospital' (cellular?) phone as
>>> well.

>> If they don't think it is cellular, it still might be some variation of
>> it. If they want to cover the entire town, it would almost have to be, but
>> if it only needs to work near the hospital, it might be some sort of
>> standalone system. The latter would have the distinct advantage of being
>> less likely to saturate in an emergency, or of being able to implement
>> precedence and pre-emption, like military systems at least used to do.

>>> Well, that's what I have doing all this past week.

>> Sounds like you were better entertained than anyone, yourself most of
>> all, would have wished. Glad to have you back.

> Moto and others sell cell phone technology based private systems. They
> work especially well in places like hospitals. Look for little 1' or
> shorter antennas in the halls. The nice thing about cell technology is
> that it can be designed for a limited area such as a hospital and the
> surrounding support businesses. And can easily have multiple places
> tied together.

>> Something very odd, to me at least: In 150 years, Independence has
>> never once been directly hit by a tornado. They say that is because we
>> are in a low-lying valley area. Things sort of blow over the top of
>> us. Elk City State Park, five miles west of us got hit by a very big
>> tornado about a week ago however. And that one was a *weebitclose* IMO,
>> as the far west side of town got some damage and -- God Forbid! --
>> even Walmart had to go into a lockdown that day for twenty minutes; no
>> one admitted to or allowed to leave the store during the storm. PAT]

> Tornadoes have a very small foot print compared to other weather
> systems. I've been within 5 miles of a tornado 5 or 10 times in my life
> yet never seen or heard one. And this covers 3 very separated homes in 2
> states. The closest I ever got was we almost bought a house when moving
> to Raleigh but rented instead. The 2 weeks after moving in, a really big
> tornado grazed the back yard of the house we almost bought. :)

> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: I understand the _height_ of buildings
> in a community make a difference also. For instance, I have never seen
> nor heard of a tornado in downtown Chicago (for example; is it even
> possible?) nor in Manhattan, NY. I _assume_ it may have something to
> do with the overall height on average of the buildings. Am I correct
> on that? Our tallest buildings here in Independence are, approximatly
> in this order: 'Professional Building' downtown, 6 stories; the 'Arco
> Building' (also known as 'Independence Corporate Office Center'), 5
> stories; a portion of Mercy Hospital, 4 stories; 'Penn Terrace' (a
> senior citizen housing complex), 6 stories; Saint Andrews Roman
> Catholic Church, the Presbyterian Church, and Epiphany Episcopal Church
> each of which have steeples about 50-70 feet high. And they are all
> scattered about town, not right next to each other, as for example one
> would see buildings along Michigan Avenue in Chicago. Unlike a place
> like Chicago, where one town ends and another suburb immediatly
> begins and the only thing you notice is a sign saying now leaving
> suburb X and entering suburb Y, same style houses and continuing
> streets, you leave one town here, go through a rural area and then come
> eventually to the next town, five to fifteen or twenty miles
> away. That may make a difference in air/wind patterns also. PAT]

We've had little mini tornadoes here in RI. Some have knocked bricks off
buildings, etc. But those are few and far between.

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