Coalition urges FCC to protect channel for wireless medical devices

AHA News Now

The Federal Communications Commission should protect the 608-614 MHz spectrum band for the Wireless Medical Telemetry Service, the AHA's American Society for Healthcare Engineering and 11 other organizations told the agency Friday. Hospitals operate devices such as wireless heart and blood pressure monitors in the band, known as Channel 37. The coalition applauded the agency's proposal to keep the current Channel 37 allocation, noting that moving WMTS devices to another band would cost hospitals more than $2 billion. However, the group expressed concern that other, unlicensed devices might share the channel with the service. "The potential threat to patient safety created by the widespread use of unlicensed devices operating co-channel to WMTS devices is too great to allow such devices to 'share' this band," the group wrote, commenting on the proposed rule. More than 117,000 health care devices are registered to operate in Channel 37. ASHE, which serves as WMTS coordinator, urges all hospitals and health care facilities that have not done so to immediately register their telemetry equipment at For more information, email ASHE's John Collins at

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