UCLA hospital bans cellphones, laptops

Charles Ornstein writes in the Los Angeles Times:

UCLA’s neuropsychiatric hospital has banned all cellphones and laptop computers after a patient posted group photos of other patients on a social networking website, officials confirmed Monday.

Dr. Thomas Strouse, medical director of the Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital, said in a statement that the decision was part of “UCLA Health System’s ongoing efforts to enhance patient privacy and confidentiality in compliance with California’s patient rights law.”


UCLA spokeswoman Dale Tate said the hospital became aware of the posted photos coincidentally from a nurse’s family member. The patients apparently all gave their consent to be photographed, Tate said.

“I was concerned about the potential covert use of such cameras, without the consent of those being photographed, or under circumstances where someone’s agreement to be photographed might not be well-reasoned or fully competent,” Strouse said in the statement.


Other hospitals have banned cellphone cameras as well. Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego forbade employees from carrying cellphones in patient-care areas after investigators found images of children, taken at the hospital, on a respiratory therapist’s computer and cellphone. The therapist later pleaded guilty to child molestation and exhibiting a minor in pornography.

Full story – Los Angeles Times

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