23 May Healthcare Series: Hospitals Security Challenges
Reprinted from American Alarm
Hospitals have dynamic security profiles as they must incorporate strategies for protecting patients, employees, equipment, medical records, medications, and visitors. Because hospitals typically have established security programs, any security partner they bring on for additional support must be able to integrate with these systems. At the same time, hospitals must ensure that their security solutions support compliance with governing entities and regulatory guidelines within the healthcare industry.
Here’s a closer look at some top security challenges hospitals face.
An eye toward compliance
Hospitals must follow strict compliance standards put in place by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO), the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
These organizations dictate how hospitals must operate in order to retain accreditation, how patient records are managed and secured, how patient interactions are managed, and how drugs are stored and handled within the facility. A hospital’s security strategy must account for the compliance standards laid out by each of these organizations so the hospital doesn’t risk facing fines, lawsuits, or loss of accreditation.
Compliance requires adhering to specific access control guidelines for rooms used to store drugs and medical records. Access control enables organizations to track and provide records of how staff members move throughout the building. Pairing access control with video surveillance (when appropriate) helps the security team verify precisely who entered a secure space, which is key in the event of an audit.
Protecting patients, staff, and visitors
Security features like access control, video surveillance, and panic buttons work to keep patients, staff, and visitors safe within a hospital.
Access control systems make it possible to control and track the flow of patients, staff, and visitors. Systems must accommodate scenarios like locked wards, visitor areas, and employee-only zones to ensure that each area is accessible only to authorized individuals.
Panic buttons are a standard integration in hospital security systems so staff can subtly signal for help if needed. These buttons can be placed in discrete, strategic locations throughout the hospital.
Seamless system integration
Hospitals rely on robust security infrastructures, and any security partner that comes on board must be able to integrate seamlessly with the existing networks and IT frameworks.
American Alarm team members are all experts in the equipment used. They are prepared to consult with a hospital’s IT team to discuss system compatibility concerns and work through configurations needed to ensure a successful integration.
The bottom line
Because hospitals have diverse needs and provide life-saving services to patients, they need responsive security partners who can support such a large-scale organization.
The American Alarm team has both the industry experience and the bandwidth to support and augment security infrastructure for organizations of this scale. Whether your organization requires on-site consultations or access to a knowledgeable technician, our team can accommodate your needs efficiently. We offer regular service and inspections to ensure your system works optimally and your questions are answered.