Mitigating Hospital Security Risks

Share this post

Hospitals and other healthcare facilities are thought of as safe havens for patients and the community. But the threat of violence or other security risks is more common than the average patient may think. Hospitals must balance the need to be welcoming with the need to be as secure as possible. Leaders of healthcare organizations are tasked with developing protocols to ensure patient safety and well-being just like any other business.

Why Healthcare Facilities and Hospitals Face Unique Security Risks

Map with Hospital IconsHospitals face a unique challenge to providing security because of the environment—patients and loved ones arrive at the hospital stressed out and feeling emotional during emergency situations and planned procedures alike, which could lead to conflict.

According to healthcare security expert Tony York, CPP, CHPA, executive vice president at Paladin Security & PalAmerican Security, hospitals are unique because they are open and accepting of anyone who enters, which means other patients and staff may be subject to unstable or volatile people—including those who are intoxicated, have a behavioral health issue, or are imprisoned and visiting for care.

But hospital security cannot be intrusive—it can’t get in the way of delivering care to the community it serves. Hospital leadership is faced with developing strategies for mitigating risk as it evolves.

Crime and Security Mitigation Strategies

The American Hospital Association (AHA) and the International Association for Healthcare Security and Safety (IAHSS) have developed their workplace safety guidelines, Creating Safer Workplaces: A guide to mitigating violence in health care settings.

 To help mitigate risk and keep patients and staff safe, the AHA and IAHSS recommend:

  • Developing a workplace safety committee
  • Conducting annual hazard vulnerability assessments
  • Considering environmental design’s impact on safety
  • Engaging internal and external security personnel

 In addition, the AHA and IAHSS recommend leaders use CAP Index Scoring System to forecast local crime around a hospital or healthcare facility. Leaders can use the data to appropriately plan and mitigate risk with security staff, cameras and other technology. Assess your facility’s risk.

What Clients Say

CAP Reports are critical to my risk assessments. They have enabled us to take a more surgical approach to investing in our stores that need it the most.

Brad Reeves
Senior Manager of Asset Protection
Five Below, Inc.

CAP Index is the first tool I turn to when time is of the essence. I can always depend on CAP Index to provide me qualified crime information within a very few minutes that I feel comfortable reviewing with the C-Suite.

Stephen A. Brown, CPP
Director, Corporate Security / Facility Security Officer
Burns & McDonnell

CAP Index data is a vital part of our security decision-making process.

Keith McGlen, CPP, CHPA
Associate Vice President
System Security Services
Memorial Hermann Health System

CRIMECAST® Reports have helped our organization for many years to proactively assess the particular risk for crime surrounding our facilities. The CAP Index® CRIMECSAST Platform is an easy-to-use online service that provides us with the flexibility to share and decentralize crime risk data within our North America business units.

Carlos J. Cortez,
Manager, Global Security Programs,
Kraft Foods, Inc. / Mondelez International

Our property selectors are not discouraged from a site just because it receives a high score. What we do is issue every store – all of them – a security classification. The classification determines how we allocate our security resources to that store.

Claude Verville,

CAP Index's online platform, CRIMECAST, is great. It is easy to use and quick!

Ken Wieczorek,
Bank of America

In industries where there is high public contact and a customer is coming to our location (such as retail), why would you leave it to chance when planning security when there is an easy, affordable tool? When investing a million dollars on a location, what is this small charge compared to what it may cost you when you get sued?

Jay Beighley,
Nationwide Insurance

CAP Index assessments are a must for anyone engaged in asset protection. The new website is much improved and as important, easy to navigate.

Bruce List,
The Williams Companies

We have been using CAP Index for a few years and include it in our security vulnerability assessments. Highly recommend it.

Dan Yaross
Director, Protective Services
Nationwide Children's Hospital