A June shooting at a Bronx hospital that left one doctor dead re-sharpened the focus on how facilities can prepare for these highly shocking and traumatic events.
Shooting incidents in hospitals remain relatively rare, according to studies, but that doesn’t mean employees should be complacent or adopt a “this could never happen here” attitude, Baker Donelson’s Emily Wein told me.
Wein advised training employees to recognize threats, to identify and speak to potentially “problematic” people as they enter the facility, and to follow protocols in place to protect patients from a shooter. She also advised working with law enforcement to train employees, identify security weaknesses, and help police respond in an emergency.
In addition, communicating with the community about active shooting incidents—before, during, and after—can help restore a hospital’s reputation for safety should an event occur, David Jarrard, of Jarrard, Phillips, Cate & Hancock Inc., told me. Jarrard’s firm works with health-care industry clients to develop communications strategies addressing a variety of situations.
Jarrard said hospital management must recognize they can’t control the message completely, but they can help minimize the damage to the facility’s reputation caused by an active shooter event. He recommended developing a crisis communications policy in advance, similar to one the hospital would use in any other emergency situation, such as a hurricane or earthquake.
Have a social media policy and ensure employees know its parameters, so they can help get out the message that the hospital has prepared for the event and is doing everything possible to protect its patients, he said. Jarrard also recommended preparing a “black” website on which information about the event can be posted.
My takeaways? Dealing with an active shooter is never easy, but preparing in order to minimize employee and patient risks, and managing the message after an incident, can help the institution and community recover more quickly.
Read my full story here.
Stay on top of new developments in health law and regulation with a free trial to the Health Law Resource Center.
Learn more about Bloomberg Law and sign up for a free trial.
All Bloomberg BNA treatises are available on standing order, which ensures you will always receive the most current edition of the book or supplement of the title you have ordered from Bloomberg BNA’s book division. As soon as a new supplement or edition is published (usually annually) for a title you’ve previously purchased and requested to be placed on standing order, we’ll ship it to you to review for 30 days without any obligation. During this period, you can either (a) honor the invoice and receive a 5% discount (in addition to any other discounts you may qualify for) off the then-current price of the update, plus shipping and handling or (b) return the book(s), in which case, your invoice will be cancelled upon receipt of the book(s). Call us for a prepaid UPS label for your return. It’s as simple and easy as that. Most importantly, standing orders mean you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you’re relying on. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.960.1220 or by sending an email to email@example.com.
Put me on standing order at a 5% discount off list price of all future updates, in addition to any other discounts I may quality for. (Returnable within 30 days.)
Notify me when updates are available (No standing order will be created).
This Bloomberg BNA report is available on standing order, which ensures you will all receive the latest edition. This report is updated annually and we will send you the latest edition once it has been published. By signing up for standing order you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you need. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.372.1033, option 5, or by sending us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put me on standing order
Notify me when new releases are available (no standing order will be created)