The last thing you’d expect to see on a cell phone display is a device with a phone call button.
But that’s exactly what is happening at kiosks around the country, including in Boston, where the city’s Department of Public Health says it’s installed 10,000 new kiosks in areas where the devices are already installed.
Kiosks like the one in Boston are an alternative to the usual walkie-talkie and have the added benefit of providing a public health benefit to residents.
In addition to the kiosks, Boston Public Health is installing about 6,000 cell phone dispensers in areas of the city where people have been turning to the devices as a way to avoid calling emergency services.
While the phones may not be the most convenient, they are an essential tool for public health and safety in Boston.
“These kiosks have the potential to dramatically reduce the number of calls that are made and the number that are missed,” said David Danko, the city manager of public health.
Danko said the phones can provide a public safety benefit in a way that traditional walkie devices can’t.
“With cell phones, the person who is using it is the one that has to actually make that call, so it’s not an option that we would have otherwise had,” Dankos said.