Supporting Staff with Enhanced Safety and Security

By Kim Barnhardt, MHA, MBA, BS, RN, CPSO, Manager, Clinical Consulting and Education

8/17/2021

 

Protecting workers is a must for all businesses, but especially true in healthcare. Delivering acute care involves stressful scenarios where emotions run high. Patients suffering physical or mental trauma can become uncooperative or belligerent. Others could be under the influence of drugs or alcohol and threatening violence. This will always be a concern for the Emergency Department (ED), where anger can quickly escalate. The threats are very real in healthcare. In fact, healthcare workers amount to almost 50% of all workplace violence victims.

Care providers are the greatest assets of an acute care facility, and protecting them is priority one for hospital administration and management. Options to protect workers shouldn’t be complicated or costly. As technology becomes easier to use and more closely connected, sometimes what is needed is a wearable badge with a button to push. 

Staff Assist: Safety that’s always on

Midmark RTLS Staff Assist enables medical staff to call for help immediately. By pressing a button on their badge, nurses and other staff can send an urgent alert from the facility’s real-time locating system (RTLS). Notifications immediately go to facility security and others via wireless phones, computer workstations or email. 

The alert information contains the staff member’s name and location in the building, enabling security to know exactly where to go when responding—immediately offering help and working to diffuse the situation. Whether used as a mobile panic button for extreme duress, or just as an extra layer of security, management succeeds in delivering peace of mind for their healthcare staff.

Build upon the same RTLS used for Nurse Call Automation 

For hospitals and health systems already using RTLS for Nurse Call Automation, it’s simple to add Staff Assist to the existing system. 

Nurse Call Automation is an efficient time-saver for facilities. When nurses wear RTLS badges, an interface to the nurse call system can clear the patient call as soon as the nurse enters the room. This enables the nurse call system to record more accurate response times, and the data can be collected and studied against patient satisfaction scores. The convenience of Nurse Call Automation streamlines communications for caregivers and administrators, and it also gives facilities an easy entry point for adopting Staff Assist. 

Nurse Call Automation and Staff Assist seamlessly build upon one another and complement the strengths of each application—giving health systems increased efficiency and safety. Nurses receive the benefits of time savings, a lightened workload and the heightened safety and security that Staff Assist provides.  

If RTLS for Nurse Call Automation has not yet been deployed, health systems should consider combining both for initial roll-out. If Nurse Call Automation is already deployed, adding Staff Assist is simple. Adopting Staff Assist from Midmark RTLS also provides you with additional resources, such as Staff Assist Call Response reports (included in Staff + Location Reports, purchased separately), where management can rate response efficiency, determine staffing levels, assess security considerations and more.

Supporting healthcare staff  

Healthcare workers perform difficult jobs in stressful situations. Providing a safe environment is a must so they can deliver the highest level of care. Much is asked of these caregivers, and unfortunately, studies show that 63% of hospital nurses reported they felt burnout even before COVID-19. Then the pandemic overwhelmed the healthcare system causing nurses to work around the clock under extreme pressure. 

When management provides the necessary support and safety, caregivers are empowered to do their jobs at a higher level, which boosts the quality of patient care. This support from management will always include providing a safer work environment, backed by technology tools that deliver increased security and peace of mind.

To learn more about Staff Assist and other uses for RTLS at your facility, see the complete collection of Midmark RTLS solutions.