What’s wrong with using consumer monitors in operatories?
Safety is the most important assurance you can give your patients when they enter your operatory. That’s why all healthcare facilities (including dental operatories) are regulated by the NEC 70 (National Electric Code). NEC 70 includes strict electrical wiring specifications for the “Patient Care Area,” defined as 6 ft. around the chair where the patient sits. This area is also known as a “wet location” because water and blood are present. Extra precautions need to be taken to ensure the patient is safe from electrical shock.
Typical office building outlets in the US and Canada deliver 120 volts of alternating current, an amount that has been shown to be harmful to the human body. At 60 cycles per second, the electrical stimulation triggers muscles contractions too rapidly for the body to respond or move away, resulting in a loss of muscle control and the potential for prolonged electrical shock.
Consumer monitors use power cables that route all 120 volts straight into the monitor, producing an inherent risk of shock to the patient if the monitor is inside the Patient Care Area.
What if you have a 120-volt consumer monitor in the operatory?
NEC 70 requires both ground fault protection and a 300-volt insulation for all cables in the raceway, not just the ones carrying power.
- The 120V alternating current requires ground fault protection (NEC70 Section 517-20)
- The 120V power cable requires 300-volt insulation (NEC Article 300.3)
- Any HDMI, VGA, Audio cable that run the same raceway with power, each cable will require a 300-volt insulated cable protection. (NEC70 Article 300.3)
Many operatories fail to follow these codes. WHY?
Many installers and integrators may not be familiar with the codes or do not follow them. By installing consumer monitors in the operatory without proper safety enhancements, they pose a safety hazard for patients and dentists, and a legal and insurance risk for their practices.
What’s a better solution?
Install low voltage operatory monitors from the beginning and reach compliance with NEC70 without the all the additional requirements needed for a 120-v consumer monitor
“Low voltage” is commonly defined as 50 volts or fewer. DENclarity sends only 19 volts of direct current to the monitor, complying with the regulations on direct current (see NEC70 Article 525). DENclarity monitors are built for the operatory and were designed from the ground-up to comply with the healthcare codes. It’s a simple solution that prioritizes what you prioritize: patient safety. With DENclarity, not only is your practice in full compliance with safety codes, but you also have some protection from unnecessary legal or insurance risks.
DENclarity is the right solution for your operatory.