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Top Five Things Hospitals Need to do in Order to Remain Safe and Secure
Date:5/14/2009

ATLANTA, May 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Hospitals are perceived as safe places, but today they are becoming one of the most dangerous places in America. Even in the best of economic times, security is not the top priority for most hospitals. In tough times, it is an easy place to cut budget and staff. John Adams, president and COO of SecurAmerica, one of the largest U.S.-based security companies, worked in the hospital industry for 15 years and has witnessed hospital crime firsthand. His company is responsible for corporate security for many of our nation's largest buildings and companies. With his knowledge in both the security and hospital industries, his top five recommendations for a safer hospital environment include:

  1. Anyone can walk into a hospital and wander around the halls. To detour intruders with mal intent from entering, secure all entry points 24-hours a day including front doors, side doors, loading docks, offices with outside access and especially the emergency room entrance. At each entrance include a visitor check-in, a guard and surveillance cameras.
  2. Parking decks connected to hospitals are breeding grounds for crime. They should be well lit and include surveillance cameras. Physical security guards patrolling parking decks add extra security.
  3. Patients' possessions can be easily removed from their rooms while they are being transported to other areas in the hospital. Possessions must be properly protected in a secured, locked space such as a drawer or closet. Visitors should also be alert and never leave their belongings unattended in a patients' room.
  4. Every hospital must have an updated fire and life safety plan. Employees must study and practice the plan on a regular basis so they know exactly what to do if a fire breaks out. Plans need to include exit strategy for each patient room, clearly marked exit signs, working fire alarms and sprinkler systems, etc.
  5. Employees must be well screened through background checks before hiring and well trained afterwards. Ongoing training for hospital staff will keep employees alert and security fresh on their minds.

These recommendations cannot guarantee that crime will end but it will educate hospital employees on ways to prevent crime.


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SOURCE SecurAmerica
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