Doctors, nurses, and patients are what comes to mind when you think of a hospital. Very rarely do people think of security officers much less notice one on the premise. But if you were to go today, I guarantee that you will see a few more security officers at a hospital than your last visit. The number of security officers is growing due to the increase in demand for safety and security in healthcare institutions. Don’t believe me? Well, according to the International Association for Healthcare Security and Safety (IAHSS), the most common crime in healthcare facilities is disorderly conduct along with assault and theft.
Hospitals must face and deal with several security challenges daily, and unlike other institutions or businesses, a hospital never closes which makes securing them a lot more difficult. From patients, staff, and visitors to equipment, supplies, and pharmaceuticals, many aspects of a hospital must remain secure. The challenge with securing a hospital starts with the high volume of people entering and exiting the building at all hours of the day and lobby doors having to remain open. Let’s explore a few areas that hospital security focus on for improvement.
While hospital technology is always evolving, there is one department that still uses outdated technology. It’s not uncommon for hospital security teams to use technology that doesn’t live up to today’s hospital security concerns. Hospitals are about saving lives, so it’s only fair that the security team get equipped with the right technology for the job. One of the main issues that security teams face is the inability to monitor, track and record daily activities. Usually, security teams use different systems for different functions. For example, daily activities could be reported on paper-based daily logs while using a completely different system for incident reporting. Hospital security teams would benefit from using a single system where they can track tours, report incidents, and access information resulting in better reporting for all stakeholders, better analysis of KPIs and ultimately increasing security.
Better Visitor Management
Children hospitals limit visitor access to only parents and caretakers when it is after hours, and there are other visitor restrictions and limitations during the day. It makes sense, right? Children hospitals must do what they can to make sure that those in their care are always safe. Visitor management in other hospitals can be challenging. While not as strict as children hospitals, healthcare facilities need to know who is entering their building and for what reason. Some hospitals have ditched their paper guest books and implemented a cloud-based secure visitor management software system to register and provide a badge to all visitors. I get it; when you are at a hospital to see a loved one the last thing you want to do is have to register with security first, you want to get to your loved one as fast as possible. Fortunately, visitor management systems help facilitate the process, so it is as hassle-free as it can be.
Improved Communication Between Stakeholders
Hospital security teams are actively taking the steps needed to improve communication between operations, security officers, and hospital administration. An effective channel is vital in many situations. Let’s say an incident happens, with an active channel of communication the officers can alert their supervisor, and the supervisors can take the appropriate steps to contract help and inform the hospital’s administrators. It also allows operations to dispatch the proper support. Hospital personnel can then keep everyone in the building calm until the incident is resolved.
With everything that goes on in a hospital, the last thing people want to worry about is a security threat. However, there is no point in looming and wondering when an incident will happen since there are ways to prepare. Understanding how technology can be used to enhance healthcare security is a start. Investing more time and preparation for safety and security will minimize risks. Hospitals usually spend less on security than other areas of a hospital, so easy-to-use platforms would be an easy integration to make hospitals more secure.
Trackforce has helped many healthcare institutions take control of their security operations by offering an advanced security workforce management solution that transforms the way reporting is conducted, improves visitor management and communication between all stakeholders. To learn more contact us for a demo.