Friday, March 15, 2013

Bacterial Contamination of Cell Phones- Revisited

Here is a recent article in Journal of Hospital Medicine on bacterial contamination of smartphones. I have previously written about bacterial contamination of mobile phones on this blog both here and here

One hundred fifteen (56.7%) participants used smart phones, and 88 (43.3%) used non-smart phones. Bacteria with pathogenic potential were isolated from 58 (28.6%) mobile phones, more often from smart phones than from non-smart phones (34.8% vs 20.5%, P=0.03). Using multivariaable analysis, smart phones (vs non-smart phones) were a significant risk factor for contamination by bacteria of pathogenic potential (adjusted odds ratio [OR], 4.02; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.43-11.31). 

Like much of the inanimate environment, (smart)phones are colonized with bacteria. The impact on cross transmission of hospital acquired pathogens is not known. 

This get us back to the basics. Our hands are constantly in touch with the animate and inanimate environment. Handwashing prior to patient care remains the key risk reduction factor and must be practiced religiously.

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