Developing a Personal Electronic Device Policy

Angie SzumlinskiLegal

ECRI has unveiled their guidance on the subject of Personal Electric Device (PED) policy. The report covers both basic topics, like what to include in such a policy and the procedures therein, and more in-depth concepts such as tracking and, if necessary, wiping phones if they are stolen or missing. Developing a policy is a relatively simple process if facilities consider only the basic elements involved, which are likely the main concerns on the minds of supervisors, such as respecting resident privacy and confidentiality, restricting private conversations and wasted time during work hours, and preventing unethical transmission of PHI. What will help successful SNFs and other care centers set themselves apart from the competition are intelligent means of enforcing said policies and ensuring that those policies are comprehensive enough for the vast task ahead of them. Some risks of PEDs in the workplace may not be immediately salient to supervisors and thus very careful and detailed thought must go into the construction of a truly excellent policy.

Reports have been received wherein staff plugged their devices into the USB ports on important medical devices like infusion pumps and caused severe device malfunctions or transmitted malware into the device’s programming. Click To Tweet These kinds of risks and problems are not immediately obvious, so to prevent them a policy must be comprehensive in its approach, even detailing rooms where charging is allowed.

Looking for help writing a policy? HealthCap has got you covered. Check out our Resource and Education Center for an example policy that you can customize to fit your facility. Use code PEDFREE at checkout to get it for free: