So drivers are banned from texting while driving, but doctors are not banned from texting or posting to Facebook from the operating room? Have you heard of distracted doctors? Yes, this is a real problem and it is very serious. Research is showing that smartphone and other electronic device use during medical practice are on the rise. Some of that use is legitimate, some of it is clearly not, and some of that use is questionable.

Interview questions

Before undergoing a medical procedure you speak with your doctor about expectations, recovery, pain, risks, etc. Maybe it is time to start having additional discussions about his or her smartphone use during your impending procedure. Questions to be asked may include:

  • Does the hospital or medical facility that employs your doctor have a policy regarding smartphone use during a patient procedure?
  • Does your doctor use his or her smartphone for personal texts and phone calls?
  • Does your doctor use social media during procedures?

This may be a good strategy going forward until there are some laws and policies made regarding smartphone use by medical professionals, but what do you do if you have already been injured by a distracted doctor? Contact our Philadelphia distracted doctor attorney, Eric Weitz, for a consultation regarding the facts of your case and the injuries you sustained.

Reasons for smartphone use

Doctors may consult medical apps and websites or access patient notes and records during procedures for their patients’ benefit. This is clearly an appropriate use of technology, but what if a doctor sends a text message to her husband during surgery at a time that the doctor believes is safe and does not put the patient at risk? What about an anesthesiologist posting to Facebook from the operating room while he is supposed to be monitoring a sedated patient?

Some hospitals and practices have policies regarding medical staff smartphone use, but many of them do not. Some of them do not want to implement policies because they do not want to have to monitor their medical professionals’ smartphone use and enforcing policies may be a challenge. Policies may be difficult to implement and enforce, but avoiding them all together may be putting patients at risk.

Discovering the distraction

During the discovery phase of your case we will learn about medical professionals’ smartphone use and other distractions at the time the malpractice occurred. We can review smartphone records to see what Internet sites were visited, what calls took place, and how many texts were sent and received. We can also interview witnesses who were present at the time of the procedure to ask about smartphone usage.

If you have been injured due to a distracted medical professional, let a Philadelphia distracted doctor expert at The Weitz Firm, LLC help you recover for your injuries and damages. You put your life in your doctors’ hands and they should be responsible for their negligent conduct that has caused your injuries.

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