There is a lot of pressure and attention right now on hospitals and our healthcare system to perform at top speed and accuracy – for the heath and safety of the community. In addition to our front-line healthcare workers performing the best they can with limited resources, those hired to manage and maintain the security of all who enter a hospital are essential players in the overall security and safety system of a hospital.
So, when it comes to implementing security protocols, corporate security executives rely on security teams who are trained, prepped, and ready to uphold the hospital’s safety and security plans. Here’s what they’re looking for: on time rounds and patrols, dependable guards, and guard training fit for a hospital safety system. Let’s dive in with more details.
On Time Rounds and Patrols
There is no doubt that one of the biggest concerns a security executive has is knowing where the security team is and what they’re doing at all times. Security executives are busy ensuring all other aspects of hospital security is being implemented, including HIPPA regulations, cybercrime and data security, healthcare staff and visitor safety, patient violence, perimeter security, to name a few items. They rely on their security team to uphold their Enterprise Security Risk Management (ESRM) plans while also trusting them to do the job they were hired to do. At a moment’s notice, a security executive will require knowledge and an update on where the team is and the activities they have accomplished.
The Power of Guard Tour Tracking and Monitoring
On time rounds and security patrol are only possible when supervisors can actively track and monitor their guards on duty. Guard tour tracking does what it says – it allows supervisors to visually track the progress of each guard’s tour as they make their rounds in real-time. Tracking can be done remotely and from a central location or hub. Alongside tracking, guard tour reporting gives supervisors a visual on any incidents a guard encounters, including missed check points or activities during a scheduled tour.
Dependable Guards and Security Guards
Having dependable and reliable guards are virtues admired across industries. For the security industry working in healthcare security, this equates to having guards who are on time to start their shifts, who are professionally dressed according to uniform standards, and who take accountability and responsibility in adhering to their set schedules.
Keeping Security Guard Schedules in Check
The best way for security teams to maintain efficient scheduling is to make them dynamic. So, what does it mean to have a “dynamic schedule”? It’s more than using spreadsheets, although commendable for small or start-up security companies. Security teams that are ready for growth, or are beginning to realize the efficiency of having automated operations, use a dynamic schedule that can automatically alert supervisors of any gaps that need to be filled while also providing guards with flexibility and scheduling assurance. This is the start of establishing proper time and labor management. A truly automated dynamic schedule has the technological intuition to also track the hours your security team works, going beyond what a spreadsheet can ever do to ensure costs are kept at bay.
Guard Training Fit for a Hospital Safety System
The healthcare environment requires around-the-clock security and safety by its nature. Managing a 24/7 security environment is no easy task, not to mention healthcare’s strict regulations. Highly trained and certified guard services are key to maintain compliance – and are highly expected by any hospital security executive. To meet this demand, here are a few key areas of training that your security team should be able to tackle:
Patient and Staff Interaction During a Crisis
A hospital is a mixed bag of emotions; patients are overwhelmed with their needs and visitors are frustrated at seeing their loved ones in pain. It is the expectation of every security guard on duty at a hospital to handle a crisis with care and responsibility – especially when the unthinkable occurs. Tony York, author of Hospital and Healthcare Security, a certified Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) member, indicated that healthcare security executives deal with two top issues: patient violence and infant abductions. Security teams must be trained to handle even the most extreme cases with ease and control.
Critical Emergency Inspections
These include but are not limited to fire extinguisher location checks, knowledge of emergency exit procedures and appropriate routes, standing room capacity in emergency waiting areas. Digital reports, alongside easy-to-access video how-tos and PDF instructions, aid a security guard’s inspection of these essential tasks and especially aid in helping a security executive provide proof of emergency compliance.
Emergency Health Guidelines and Protocols
The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically shifted the view of front-line security guards. As critical workers, security guards must not only comply with the hospital’s set security guidelines but must also be vigilant in adhering to any local or state ordinances. Recently, security teams must be trained to identify – both internally among security team members and externally among patients occupying a waiting area, hallway, or even a parking garage – COVID-19 symptoms – and must know how to react when something is not right.