24 Aug 2015

Safety and security is paramount to hospitals, doctor’s offices and medical facilities alike. The last thing healing and sick patients need to worry about is their safety from threats that can emerge quickly in a stressful situation. This is why security professionals look to integrated solutions that can manage access to restricted areas, help lockdown a facility in an emergency and quickly investigate incidents as they occur.

The 2014 Healthcare Crime Survey found that heavy violent crimes in healthcare settings have increased from 2012 to 2013, illustrating to security professionals the data they need to accurately identify the frequency of these crimes at their facilities. Moreover, the nature of medical facilities can result in additional stress for patients and their families, making these locations rife with potential threats.

The security industry has responded to these threats by developing and implementing new technology – from advanced security cameras, to biometrics and fingerprint readers, to integrated communications centers. Access control in particular has advanced significantly to offer these facilities the ability to control access remotely, through mobile applications, confirm identity quickly and easily, and program varying levels of access for visitors, patients, doctors and staff. In particular, a hospital requires oversight 24 hours a day, seven days a week, which makes controlling access a challenge.

Using integrated systems, security officials can program various doors and locks to activate at various times and apply rules to access based on time of day, shift changes, etc. Sensitive materials, such as pharmaceuticals or surgical equipment, needs an entirely different set of access control standards, necessitating a solution that can meet all of these needs quickly and easily.

Large medical facilities need access control solutions that offer protection from threats of all kinds. Implementing a solution such as the Vanderbilt Security Management System (SMS) allows security officials a powerful, single source for integrating a facility’s access control technologies, digital video and alarm monitoring systems. The SMS is scalable, so as the campus grows, so to can the solution to meet the facility’s expanded needs. It can also serve multiple sites or global organizations, as healthcare facilities can often have several buildings or medical offices within a specific area, or offices spread throughout a region. Whatever the challenge, an SMS can become the solution.

Smaller doctor’s offices can benefit from an easy-to-use access control solution, such as bright blue®, supports up to 32 doors and management of up to 5,000 cardholders. Embedded intelligence technology lets security professionals manage the system from a Web browser, which can be helpful in situations where security needs to be on the ground. Combined with integrated video, the bright blue solution offers medical facilities a way to perform investigations with even greater ease.

The balance between maintaining a safe facility and establishing a welcoming environment for patients and their visitors makes increased levels of security tough to accomplish, but by implementing user-friendly, integrated solutions, this level of comfort and safety can be achieved.