Hos­pi­tals told to re­view dis­as­ter plans

Modern Healthcare - - NEWS -

HHS is­sued a memo fol­low­ing the Paris at­tacks no­ti­fy­ing hos­pi­tals that the Depart­ment of Home­land Se­cu­rity has called for “en­hanced vig­i­lance” at hos­pi­tals and other points of crit­i­cal in­fra­struc­ture. The memo of­fered guidance and re­ferred providers to a num­ber of re­sources that of­fer best prac­tices, in­clud­ing the fol­low­ing:

■ Re­view your se­cu­rity plans and con­duct ex­er­cises reg­u­larly, us­ing sce­nar­ios sim­i­lar to re­cent at­tacks (e.g., ac­tive shooter, bomb threat).

■ En­sure employees are fa­mil­iar with their sur­round­ings, at­ten­tive to sit­u­a­tions that may de­vi­ate from the sta­tus quo, vig­i­lant through­out their work­day and ready to re­port sus­pi­cious ac­tiv­ity to the au­thor­i­ties in a timely man­ner.

■ Em­brace the “see some­thing, say some­thing” con­cept. HHS said past in­ves­ti­ga­tions have un­cov­ered wit­nesses who saw some­thing sus­pi­cious but failed to no­tify po­lice.

■ Look for red flags, such as in­di­vid­u­als overly curious about fa­cil­i­ties and pro­ce­dures; un­usual pho­tog­ra­phy or video of peo­ple or fa­cil­i­ties; pro­longed sur­veil­lance of a fa­cil­ity; or in­di­vid­u­als who may be mis­rep­re­sent­ing their iden­tity.

■ Main­tain proper func­tion­ing of emer­gency com­mu­ni­ca­tions equip­ment and con­duct reg­u­lar tests.

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