Canadian Security Magazine

IAHSS healthcare security conference wrap-up

By Canadian Security   

News Health Care healthcare iahss

The 46th Annual General Meeting & Seminar Program for the International Association for Healthcare Security & Safety (IAHSS) was recently held in San Diego, with more than 220 healthcare security leaders in attendance from the U.S., Canada and Australia.

Daily education sessions allowed for invaluable dialogue in areas as diverse as customer service and strategic project planning, to active shooters and designing secure facilities.  Leading edge technology and networking opportunities were also a part of the lineup of this four-day event.

Keynote Speaker Chris Van Gorder, FACHE, President and CEO of Scripps Health, opened the program as he discussed the growth and opportunity in healthcare security, chronicling his life experiences that took him from hospital security to local law enforcement and then back to hospital security and safety. In his presentation, Van Gorder stated, “”If I can take care of the needs of my staff, I can enable my staff to do their job of taking care of patients.” Under Van Gorder’s leadership, Scripps Health has survived and generated a $180 million positive bottom line.

Industry newcomers found themselves sitting alongside leaders from around the globe who came together to learn about best practices and tools to improve security programs within hospitals and health centers. The AGM was a valuable forum for healthcare security information learning and sharing.

International industry leaders gave presentations covering a wide range of topics such as:


–   How The Affordable Care Act Has Changed Security, presented by Ben Scaglione, CPP, CHPA, Director of Healthcare Services, G4S Secure Solutions;

–   William E. Koffel, P.E., FSFPE, President, Koffel Associates, Inc., discussed the impact of some of the significant changes between the 2000 and 2012 Editions of the Life Safety Code as it pertains to emergency planning and security measures;

–  William Richter, RN, Manager Clinical Operations, HAH Emergency Services, talked about the active shooter phenomena in the healthcare setting. Richter compared hospital shootings with shootings in other areas such as schools and retail establishments;

–  The Hennepin County Medical Center shared the pathway to a successful launch of a CEW program at their institution, the hurdles they faced along the way, and their novel solutions;

–  Brenda Conway, Manager, Emergency Management, Parking and Security Crisis Control Centre, Protection Services, Kingston Hospitals, examined how best to develop a Forensic Patient Policy with all the key stakeholders during her presentation entitled “Managing Prisoners in a Healthcare Environment.”

During lunch, attendees learned poolside the preliminary findings of the 2014 Weapon Survey and, the second day, the 2014 Crime Survey, both commissioned by the International Healthcare Security & Safety Foundation (IHSSF). Lisa Pompeii, PhD, of the Duke University Medical  Center, discussed how weapon availability and use varies by hospital and event characteristics. Karim H. Vellani, CPP, CSC, the Lead Author of the 2014 Healthcare Crime Survey, examined the upward spiral of heavy violent crimes from 2012 to 2013. Also during lunch, IAHSS President Marilyn Hollier awarded 12 members who recently achieved CHPA status during the CHPA examination session prior to the AGM Program.

To conclude the 46th AGM, the IHSSFoundation presented their Recognition Awards Program, which highlighted security programs and management achievements, and commemorated individuals, healthcare institutions and IAHSS Chapters for overall excellence and exceptional contributions in the fields of healthcare security, safety and risk management.

Among the honorees were: Chris Van Gorder of Scripps Health; IAHSS Executive Director Evelyn Meserve; Officer Venus G. Powell-Uzzell of  Einstein Medical Center Philadelphia (EMCP); Steve Gaunt, CHPA, Past IHSSFoundation Board Member William Farnsworth, Past IAHSS President; Marilyn Hollier, CHPA and University of Michigan Hospitals and Health Centers Security Services; Security Officer Chris Brewer from the Fredericton Area Security Services, and special recognition went to long-time IAHSS member and former two-term IAHSS President Fredrick G. Roll, MA, CHPA-F, CPP, CHRM, Founder and Advisor for Healthcare Security Consultants, Inc.
IAHSS President Marilyn Hollier concludes, “Without the endless support and contributions from our members and the work of the IHSSFoundation, this annual event would not be possible. The Board of Directors of both IAHSS as well as the IHSSFoundation worked tirelessly to make this year’s AGM a resounding success. All of us at IAHSS are also very proud of the members who are newly established CHPAs. This achievement reflects their absolute hard work and commitment to healthcare security and safety. Overall, the 46th AGM was an  unforgettable experience and we cannot wait until next year!”

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