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This is an excerpt from a member-only article. To read the article in its entirety, please login or subscribe.

Visitor badge program a hit at South Carolina hospital

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July 1, 2010

Software system helps maintain security

Sometimes, a fairly simple step can help increase security and at the same time make security’s job easier. Douglas Rhodin, director of security and central transportation at Beaufort (SC) Memorial Hospital (BMH), learned that lesson after installing Sisco’s FAST-PASS® security badge system. Rhodin says the new system is quicker, easier, and better than the paper visitor badge system the 199-bed hospital previously used.

BMH is a member of the International Association for Healthcare Security & Safety. At one of its conferences, Rhodin noticed the system, and then heard about the system’s benefits again at a South Carolina Hospital Association meeting. After learning how it might help BMH stay Joint Commission (formerly JCAHO) compliant, BMH decided to update its paper pass system, which involved writing a pass and keeping duplicate hard copies. With an electronic system, BMH saw an opportunity to make security easier, and cut out more paperwork. The system makes it possible to know who and where everyone in the hospital is supposed to be during late hours. 

How it works

Each visitor is asked for a license or government-issued ID, which is scanned into the system. Certain information from the ID is then automatically filled in for the new badge. A picture is taken of the visitor and more information is manually entered, such as to what department the visitor is heading. The information is automatically stored in a database. An eight-hour expiration time and date is also printed on the badge. If visitors need to stay longer, they can ask for a new badge. The entire process takes about two minutes for new visitors and about 30 seconds for returning visitors, as some of their information is already stored in the hospital system.

 

Sometimes, a fairly simple step can help increase security and at the same time make security’s job easier. Douglas Rhodin, director of security and central transportation at Beaufort (SC) Memorial Hospital (BMH), learned that lesson after installing Sisco’s FAST-PASS® security badge system. Rhodin says the new system is quicker, easier, and better than the paper visitor badge system the 199-bed hospital previously used.



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