Published December 10, 2004
A hospital chain is taping over patients' LiveStrong wristbands because they are yellow — the same color as the "do not resuscitate" bands it puts on patients who do not want to be saved if their heart stops.
No mix-ups have been reported, but BayCare Health Systems officials do not want to take any chances.
The popular LiveStrong rubber bracelets are sold through the Lance Armstrong Foundation as part of the champion bicycle racer's efforts to raise money for cancer research.
"It could be confusing, particularly in the situation of a code or a cardiac arrest where people have to think very quickly," said Lisa Johnson, vice president of patient services at Morton Plant Mease Health Care, which is part of the chain. "We wouldn't want to mistake a Lance Armstrong bracelet and not resuscitate someone we're supposed to."
Hospitals use colored bracelets to quickly tell doctors, nurses and other staff special instructions for certain patients. For example, at BayCare Health hospitals purple bands mean the patient is at risk of falling; red means the patient has allergies. Not all hospitals use the same coloring system.