Don’t Go Pokemon Go ….& if you must, watch out! New privacy and safety dangers are being recorded almost every day. The game is full of health and computer hazards, and has potential to distract workers from their life-saving care.
What is the evidence? At this point mostly anecdotal reports and the anticipated possibility that healthcare workers could be distracted from life-saving work. You need to translate this evidence into action. Why would you do this with such relatively weak research evidence? Because the risks are far higher to ignore it, & essentially NO risks if you use the evidence. The BBB lists these problems & makes some suggestions based on incoming reports:
- Privacy: In order to play the game, users must allow the app to access other applications, such as maps and camera. The iOS version for the iPhone can access all Google data.
- Malware: So far, the app is only available in the U.S., Australia and New Zealand, which has given cybercriminals an opportunity to capitalize on the demand…. Users should only download the app through official app stores, not third-party sites.
- Safety: Players should use the same safety precautions while playing the game that they would in any other outdoor setting, including caution in strange location.
- 2 men in Encinitas fell off 50-90 foot cliffs while playing
- Distracted driving is responsible for 1 of 10 traffic fatalities. Do not Pokeman & drive. Watch for distracted people playing Pokemon Go and walking into traffice. Don’t do the same yourself.
- The app drains phone batteries so don’t get stranded far from home or in places that are not safe.
- Robbers have used Pokeman Go to lure and rob victims.
- Infringement: PokeStops are supposed to all be on public property (or cooperative
private sites), but at least one health system, Dignity Health, is asking that its facilities be removed to avoid dangers to privacy and safety of patients, visitors, families & staff.
Translating this evidence into practice? Think before you Pokemon Go, if at all. Talk to your patients–when people don’t feel well they are even more likely to be distracted.
Critical thinking? 1) List specific actions that you will do to promote privacy, safety and fight malware and infringement. These can range from “never download;never play” to…..? When developing this list specifically address the challenges above. 2) What about patient players? staff players? visitor players? How should you help them to be safe?