9.01 Telephone and Cellular Phone Use
Category: UWHC Administrative Policy Print
Policy Number: 9.01
Effective Date: January 17, 2014
Section: Personnel (Hospital Administrative)
The purpose of this policy is to outline for all University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics (UWHC) employees the
appropriate use of UWHC telephones, the use of personal cell and smart phones at work, the use of business cell
and smart phones and the safe use of cell and smart phones while driving and conducting UWHC business.
UWHC requires employees to follow the provisions of this policy when using UWHC telephones, personal cell or
smart phones at work, or UWHC-issued cell or smart phones for UWHC business. Violation(s) of this policy may
result in disciplinary action, up to and including discharge from employment.
III. PERSONS AFFECTED
This policy applies to all Authority employees, volunteers, employees of vendors, contractors or agencies doing
business on UWHC property, and students assigned to perform work at UWHC.
A. Use of the UWHC Telephone System
1. UWHC uses the Wisconsin state government's telephone system called "Centrex." Telephone
numbers with the prefixes of "261" through "267" and “890” are Centrex numbers, and require
that employees dial the last five (5) digits of the UWHC telephone number. To place a local or
long distance call outside UWHC for business purposes, the employee dials "9" to get an outside
line, followed by the telephone number.
2. There is a charge for making outgoing long distance telephone calls; therefore, employees may
only make personal long distance calls in in an emergency or for a critical need. Employees are
expected to minimize all personal calls made or received during working hours.
3. Each department can retrieve a report, via Report Manager, to monitor and investigate
questionable long distance telephone calls placed from UWHC telephones.
4. Abuse of the UWHC telephone system or utilizing any telephone to falsely report times in the
automated time and attendance system is a violation of this policy and may lead to discipline.
5. All employees are requested to record a greeting on their individual voice mailbox so callers will
know if they have reached the correct person and when the employee will be in the office again.
Whenever an employee is scheduled to be out of the office for an extended period of time, he/she
should change the greeting to inform callers of the absence and expected date and time of
6. A high level of professionalism and courtesy should be maintained in all telephone conversations.
Relaying clear and accurate information and messages is essential to the successful operation of
UWHC. Our service image to our patients and the public and our spirit of cooperative teamwork
demands that we make use of our telephone system to its maximum advantage. In order to
ensure the best service to our patients and the public, UWHC may monitor designated telephone
lines for quality assurance purposes
B. Use of UWHC Issued Cell and Smart Phones
1. UWHC issued cell and smart phone handsets, accessories, and phone numbers are the property
of UWHC and are considered a UWHC resource. Handsets, accessories, and phone numbers are
to be used for business use. Personal use should be kept to a minimum and may not interfere
with an employee’s job duties.
2. Each department shall assign a designee who identifies the individual staff needing an assigned
UWHC-issued cell or smart phone.
3. If a cell or smart phone is assigned to an individual as part of their employment at UWHC, the
individual is responsible for the care, use, and possession of the equipment. Lost or stolen
devices should immediately be reported to the IS Help Desk at (608) 265-7777.
4. It is the responsibility of each manager/supervisor to monitor cell and smart phone usage.
Monthly on-line billing detail is available on Report Manager (via U-Connect) for all UWHC cell and
5. All UWHC cell and smart phones assigned to an individual must be returned to their
manager/supervisor once employment ends.
6. Cell and smart phones should not be used within three feet of any Bio-Medical Equipment. For
more information, refer to Hospital Administrative Policy 12.23-Use of Wireless Communications
and Control Devices.
7. Employees whose job responsibilities do not specifically include driving as an essential function,
but who are issued a UWHC cell or smart phone for business use, are also expected to abide by
the provisions in this policy on cell and smart phone use while driving.
C. Cell and Smart Phone Use While Driving
1. In situations where job responsibilities include regular driving and placing and receiving business
calls while driving is necessary, hands-free equipment should be provided to facilitate the
provisions of this policy. The employee's manager has the responsibility to determine whether the
employee should be issued hands-free equipment.
2. Cell and smart phone use while driving should be kept to a minimum. While driving, attention to
the road and safety should always take precedence over conducting business over the phone.
Under no circumstances are employees allowed to place themselves or others at risk to fulfill
3. Drivers need to be aware when use of the cell or smart phone is creating a distraction from safe
driving and adjust their usage accordingly.
4. Whenever possible, drivers should complete calls while the vehicle is parked and/or use the
cell or smart phone’s "hands-free" features. These include using a headset, portable speaker,
installed speaker, or ear plugs.
5. It is strongly encouraged that whenever possible, employees safely pull off to the side of the
road, onto a side street or other appropriate place and stop the vehicle before placing or
accepting a call. The employee should make sure he or she can pull over and re-enter the road
safely. Also, the employee should be aware in some locations it is not legal to pull off on the side
of the highway to make a call unless it is an emergency.
6. Employees that utilize cell and smart phones while driving should follow all local, state and
federal regulations that apply to cell and smart phone use while driving.
7. Employees who are charged with traffic violations resulting from the use of their cell or smart
phone while driving will be solely responsible for all liabilities that result from such actions.
D. Use of Personal Cell or Smart Phones
1. While at work, employees are expected to exercise the same discretion in using their personal
cell or smart phone as is expected for the use of any UWHC issued phone. Excessive personal
cell or smart phone use during work, regardless of the phone used, can interfere with employee
productivity and be distracting to others. This includes use of personal devices for calls, texting or
internet access. See also Hospital Administrative Policy 9.04-Work Rules: UWHC Authority.
2. Personal cell or smart phones should be stored for use on non-work time. Personal cell or smart
phone use is not allowed if it results in increased costs to UWHC, interferes with the day-to-day
business and patient care activities or creates a potential safety or liability issue for the
3. Departments may limit or prohibit personal cell or smart phone use as necessary for operational
4. UWHC is not liable for the loss of personal cell or smart phones brought into the workplace.
E. Using the Phone to Report Emergencies
1. If an emergency occurs while at work, employees should use the internal emergency phone
numbers located on employee identification badges and on the "Emergency Quick Response
2. While in a vehicle, reporting emergencies using a cell or smart phone can help save lives and
property by reducing emergency response time and providing law enforcement with vital on-the-
scene information. To report road hazards, auto accidents, crimes in progress and other
emergencies, employees should dial 911 from a cell or smart phone.
This Policy creates no rights, contractual or otherwise. Statements of policy obtained herein are not made for the
purpose of inducing any person to become or remain an employee of UWHC, and should not be considered
"promises" or as granting "property" rights. UWHC may add to, subtract from and/or modify this Policy at any time.
Nothing contained in this Policy impairs the right of a non-represented employee or UWHC to terminate the
employment relationship at-will. For represented employees, who are not at-will employees, this policy does not
supersede, limit nor grant any rights beyond those provided by the applicable collective bargaining agreement.
Hospital Administrative Policy 1.17-Motor Vehicle Policy
Hospital Administrative Policy 9.04-Work Rules: UWHC Authority
Hospital Administrative Policy 12.23-Use of Wireless Communications and Control Devices (EMI)
Sr Management Sponsor: Senior Vice President, Human Resources; VP, Information Technology Services
Author(s): Director, IS Customer Service; Director, Human Resources
Approval Committee: Administrative Policy & Procedure Committee
President & CEO