Equipment standards

Critical care equipment is manufactured worldwide, but not all devices will satisfy all national standards. For example, a hand-operated suction device made by a well-known American manufacturer failed to attain one of the British Standards for such devices (A.r.n..st,ein 1996). Equipment which is safe to use in one setting may not be safe in the rest of the hospital. For example, the use of mobile telephones in the ICU is discouraged because of the potential for interference with ventilators and infusion pumps (RjchardsoD.aDd.,llEiCkSlPD┬ž.,1995), but their use in the rest of the hospital, particularly the corridors, is more difficult to control. Devices used for monitoring in MRI scanners must satisfy rigorous standards concerning non-ferrous components; for example, only a few pulse oximeters are safe for use near MRI scanners (e.g. Nonin 8600F0 with fiber-optic coupled sensor 8000FC (Cardiokinetics Ltd, Salford, UK)).

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