Christmas decorations as an impediment to patient care
Article first published online: 7 NOV 2012
Anaesthesia © 2012 The Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland
Volume 67, Issue 12, page 1398, December 2012
How to Cite
Martin, C., Clarke, C. and Lavery, J. (2012), Christmas decorations as an impediment to patient care. Anaesthesia, 67: 1398. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2044.2012.07312.x
- Issue published online: 7 NOV 2012
- Article first published online: 7 NOV 2012
Shortly after the festive decorations went up, our Clinical Technologist was called to investigate a ‘broken’ blood gas analyser (ABL810 Flex; Radiometer, Brønshøj, Denmark). Many years’ experience had furnished him with an encyclopaedic knowledge of all the kit’s and the staff’s foibles. Deft removal of tinsel (which was in contact with the analyser’s screen) restored it to full working order.
In common with many current medical devices, the ABL810 interface utilises infrared touch screen technology. A Cartesian coordinate system determines the position of the user’s touch and consequent translation into a command. To ensure accuracy, set preconditions characterise a ‘valid touch’ and the phenomenon of ‘multiple touching’ (Fig. 1), is interpreted as an error.
We suggest that multiple touching is a particular hazard during the festive season and urge colleagues to exercise caution at this time of year.
No external funding and no competing interests declared.