With increased shootings, you’ve got to prepare your hospital for an active shooting incident. Hospitals and various other healthcare organizations are increasingly developing response plans for handling these incidents and protecting both hospital staff and patients with active shooter training for healthcare employees.
Does your healthcare facility have such a plan in place? Do you, and other people you work with, know what to do if there’s an active shooter at your facility?
If not, you need to get active shooter training as soon as possible. Read on to explore why active shooter training is important, and how you can prepare to handle the incident if it ever occurs:
Why Active Shooter Training Is Important
Hospitals and other healthcare facilities are usually available to the public 24/7, which means that literally, anyone can get in. This makes it quite easy for an active shooter to gain access, and potentially cause extreme harm.
Also, you never know when an active shooter incident might occur. You can’t predict it, and it’s incredibly tough to prevent. Therefore, you and your staff should enroll in active shooter training.
Active shooter training can help save lives. Without proper training, you or anyone else from your hospital staff may not know how to deal with an active shooter incident. You may not know how to evacuate, or how to block access to where you are to keep yourself and your patients safe. Most importantly, you may not know what to do if you come face to face with an active shooter.
With active shooter training, you and your staff will be fully prepared for this kind of a frightening situation. Speaking of which, fear can make many people freeze when facing an imminent threat. If you freeze in the event of facing an active shooter, you could end up severely or fatally hurt.
Our hearts go out to the victims of the recent shootings in Dayton, Ohio and El Paso, Texas, and we want to help in some way. We’ve decided to make our
Active Shooter Protection training available, and to DONATE ALL OF THE PROCEEDS to the Victim Funds.
This training is designed to help you prepare should you ever be faced with an active shooter or intruder event. We certainly hope this never happens to you or anyone you know, but if it does we hope this training helps you stay safe.
How to Prepare for a Hospital Shooting
There are several strategies that your hospital can adapt to effectively prepare for a potential active shooter situation.
1. Raise Awareness & Security
Your hospital must raise awareness regarding potential active shooter incidents by educating the staff on preparation and prevention of a potential threat.
All staff must understand how crucial it is to learn everything about their patients, and other staff members, so that they can identify any suspicious behavior that may potentially lead to violence. HIPAA actually encourages healthcare providers to raise concerns if a patient may pose a danger to themselves or other people.
It’s also vital to enhance hospital security, having thorough check-in processes, and not let anyone unauthorized enter secure areas.
2. Develop an Emergency Response Plan
Every hospital, or other healthcare facilities, should have an emergency response plan for handling various dangerous situations, including a potential active shooting.
The plan should help all healthcare providers in the facility know exactly what to do in an active shooter event. It should include evacuation steps, emergency phone numbers, specific emergency codes, both internal and external communication practices, and processes for creating safe rooms.
3. Engage in Active Shooter Training
Active shooter training programs are some of the most crucial strategies for learning what to do in active shooter situations.
They should consist of various education lessons, pre-class surveys, post-class surveys, and simulation drills. An active shooter training video showing exactly what to do is also of significant help.
Team up with professionals who can provide you with expert materials and exercises and teach you and the other staff members how to become experts yourselves.
Best Practices for Active Shooter Incidents in Hospitals
Better hospital security, an emergency response plan, and active shooter training will help you stay safe, but what if an incident still occurs? Experts recommend taking the “secure, preserve, fight” approach.
This step requires immediately securing the location, that is, making sure that everyone goes straight to the safe rooms where the active shooter can’t get in. It’s especially vital to transfer incapacitated patients to secure areas.
Next, make sure to preserve you and your patients’ lives. You need to block access to the secure area, advise everyone to stay hidden and quiet and keep all phones and pagers in silent mode.
This is the step that you need to take only if it’s absolutely necessary. Never try and take down an active shooter on your own if you’re not in imminent danger. Only if your life depends on it should you try and incapacitate them.
Staying calm is of the essence, especially if there are patients with you. If you see the shooter, but they can’t get to you, make sure you call 911 immediately to describe what the person looks like, and what weapon they’re carrying.
All of these tips and practices will help you know exactly what to do in the case of an active shooter incident at your hospital, or other healthcare facilities. Hopefully, you’ll never need to use them, but it’s crucial that you’re fully prepared.
Commonly Viewed Emergency Prep and Active Shooter Trainings
If you decide to engage in active shooter training, Training Leader is here for you. We can provide you with expert online training to help you keep your staff and patients safe in case of an active shooter emergency, so don’t hesitate to check out these related resources.