HSS will soon publish a white paper, “Seven Steps to Building Security Into Your Healthcare Facility.” The paper examines best practices for designing a healthcare facility with security in mind, using HSS’s recent experience with longtime customer Saint Joseph Hospital in Denver, Colo., as a case study. HSS participated in every stage of the planning, construction, and move to Saint Joseph Hospital’s brand-new facility, providing security and consulting services throughout the process. The following excerpt from the paper highlights the top three qualifications your security expert should bring to the table: The Approach: Building Security from the Ground Up While outstanding security programs can be carried out within existing structures, building security design into a facility from the ground up is the optimal way to achieve the highest-performing infrastructure without costly retrofits. To do that, you need a seasoned security consultant with a thorough understanding of and willingness to share best practices. When planning a healthcare facility with security in mind, remember these key qualifications:

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HSS leaders are active contributors to furthering the field of healthcare security.

  • Partnership: Choose a consultant who shares your security philosophy and whose mission aligns with those of your organization. HSS Healthcare Security has exclusively served healthcare providers since 1971 and Saint Joseph Hospital since 1972. As an outsourcing company, HSS creates longstanding customer relationships because of our employees’ ability to integrate into customers’ culture, sharing a common understanding and set of goals. HSS listened to Saint Joseph Hospital’s objectives for securing an efficient new facility, provided input, and worked with the hospital to implement an individualized master security plan.
  • Expertise: Examine your security consultant’s professional credentials and contributions to the field. HSS COO and incoming CEO Tony York played a leading role in writing the International Association for Healthcare Security & Safety’s (IAHSS) “Security Design Guidelines for Healthcare Facilities,” the industry standard-bearer. Eric Smith, the onsite HSS Security Director during the new Saint Joseph Hospital’s construction and move, used these guidelines when making security recommendations to the hospital. Like York, Smith is active in the healthcare security industry, to which he contributes as a book author, blogger on security topics, and leader in his local IAHSS chapter. Smith’s years heading the HSS security team at Saint Joseph—plus his knowledge of protecting against crime, gleaned from his previous work as a police officer—made his input to the hospital design panel invaluable.
  • Experience: Select a security professional with experience building security considerations into facility design and conducting successful hospital moves. HSS consulted with facility leadership on the security design for St. Anthony Hospital, Lakewood, Colo., which opened in 2011. In addition, HSS’s ability to up-staff on moving days eased the relocations of University of Colorado Hospital and Children’s Hospital Colorado to their new medical campus in Aurora, Colo. Both moves occurred without interruption to patient care or security. “Children’s Hospital was pleased with the fact that HSS could bring the lessons learned from other similar hospital moves,” says Brian Sallee, the onsite HSS Security Program Manager for Children’s Hospital Colorado. Sallee wrote an article for the IAHSS Journal of Healthcare Protection Management that he, in turn, shared with Smith as best practices to follow during the Saint Joseph Hospital move.