Why are paper towel dispensers locked?

  1. I'm at work now, and I just don't understand why the paper towel dispensers are locked, so you can't unjam the paper towels. Yet, we have all this expensive equipment lying around, meds, etc. Why are the paper towel dispensers locked? It's a mystery.
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  2. 30 Comments

  3. by   kcalohagirl
    I'll do you one better. Our paper towel dispensers are electric. Battery operated. It's a real pain in the you know what when one of them goes dead in the middle of the night.

    All our paper towel dispensers are electric. Even the ones in the patient's rooms.
  4. by   GardenDove
    How annoying! I hate electric paper towel dispensers! Why complicate a simple thing?
  5. by   GardenDove
    Why is it that the hospital spends a fortune on handwashing campaigns, thousands of dollar equipement, expensive surveys, but then the paper towels are locked as if they are worth their weight in gold? I could walk off with expensive items from the supply room, sat monitors, all kinds of things...
  6. by   clemmm78
    what is an electric paper towel dispenser?
  7. by   Keepstanding
    :trout: I suppose they would rather you steal that $ 6000 pulse ox machine as opposed to the pack of paper towels that retail for $ 2:50
  8. by   kcalohagirl
    It has a sensor you wave your hand in front of, a little motor whirs, and out comes about a 9 inch piece of paper towel. And there's a delay so you can't wave your hand in front of it and get another little piece of towel for awhile.

    Yet the one in the staff restroom will occasionally spit out a towel for no reason at all. . . . .no one in the bathroom, no one even near the bathroom.

    A real pain in the neck.
  9. by   TiffyRN
    Sore topic with me. . . Since it's hard to find the one key in the unit to unlock the darn things. The way I put it is "Why do you have to make it so hard for me to do your job?". Thankfully I found out that can jack open the dispenser with my mail key. I amazed some of my co-workers the other day when I did that trick.
  10. by   perfectbluebuildings
    Quote from LPN 90
    :trout: I suppose they would rather you steal that $ 6000 pulse ox machine as opposed to the pack of paper towels that retail for $ 2:50
    you know... they started locking ours to the wall of each room now! because several dozen somehow went "missing" in the hospital last year (and this isn't a huge hospital either...) and RT has the keys to them if you have to move one or whatever.

    our paper towel dispensers are locked too!! weird... i will have to look next time i'm at work to see what else is locked up...

    then again, there are these laptops on wheels that, theoretically, could be stolen at some point in the middle of the night- wheel them down the elevators...? they are not locked or anything, just plugged in around the halls.

    but that paper towel thing, it is a mystery. i remember some rest stop i was at one time, the TP dispenser was locked, so you could SEE the TP but not get to it... annoying.
  11. by   CritterLover
    well, the average person has more use for the papertowels than the pulse-ox, right?

    when i was in college, i lived in the dorms for a year. friends of a girl that lived down the hall used to come to "visit" so they could help themselves to the tp and paper towels in our community bathroom.

    i'm sure it really is a problem, esp in the public bathrooms in the hospital.

    i'm wondering, though, if that just isn't how those things are made (paper towel dispensers)? can you close the door and get it to stay closed if the lock isn't turned?
  12. by   BJLynn
    Quote from critterlover
    i'm wondering, though, if that just isn't how those things are made (paper towel dispensers)? can you close the door and get it to stay closed if the lock isn't turned?
    if you take a little folded piece of paper towel and put it in the locking mechanism of the one in my med room, you can shut it without locking it.
  13. by   TrudyRN
    $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
  14. by   jjjoy
    The electric dispenser are supposed to more hygienic since you don't touch anything to get it to dispense. Like many modern conveniences, it works great until it doesn't and then it's harder to fix leaving you with another problem. They have these where I work and it regularly gets jammed right after they place a new roll, so no towels til someone can come and fix it.

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