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Posted by Bibi Tyler September 24, 2010 11:46

Mobile phones in hospitals have always been frowned upon, but now patients in some parts of NHS hospitals in Wales will be able to make calls from their wireless devices.

Patients who want to make calls while being in treated in hospital are advised to use the bedside phones, but some local calls can cost as much as 49 pence a minute which is a lot of cash for phone calls being made.

However, Health Minister Edwina Hart has called for hospital bedside phone contracts with private suppliers not to be renewed when they finish.

Ms Hart said: "We know that most patients and relatives want to use their personal mobile phones to keep in touch.

"Today's announcement will give people the choice of which phone they want to use and it can keep costs lower for patients and their families.

"Patients will need to be mindful that hospitals are a place for them to rest and recover after an operation and they must therefore be respectful of other patients when using mobile phones, even in the designated areas."

In addition to the usage of mobile phones being allowed, health boards will have to ensure the charges for using a bedside bed are clearly and prominently publicised. Patients will get the best deals for mobile phone calls instead of hospital landlines.

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wales | hospitals | NHS

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