In hospitals and healthcare facilities, video surveillance is an effective tool not only for increased security but also for controlling costs. Surveillance cameras can work to protect hospital employees and patients from security breaches, and provide valuable visual evidence that can be used to increase productivity and prevent dishonest claims. IP video technology is providing hospitals with added flexibility in their video surveillance installations while offering benefits such as remote video monitoring and more effective storage capabilities.
Benefits of Hospital Video Surveillance
Increase overall security and safety – Security cameras positioned throughout a hospital help to prevent crimes and break-ins and also allow operators to watch for troubled patients and monitor for unauthorized visitors in restricted areas.
Improve worker productivity – The presence of surveillance cameras on the premises can improve communication between hospital departments or buildings, allowing for heightened productivity.
Prevent dishonest claims – In instances where patients or visitors falsely attest to injuring themselves on hospital property, visual evidence from the facility's security cameras can disprove such assertions, saving the hospital from pricey unwarranted insurance claims.
Resolve employee disputes – Employee disputes are easily resolved when the clear visual proof is available. Surveillance cameras can shed light on incidents in question.
Continuous real-time monitoring – IP surveillance allows authorized hospital employees to monitor critical areas continuously, in real-time, from their personal computers.
Digital storage – Hospitals that choose to install IP-based video surveillance systems can take advantage of the benefits of digital storage. IP systems enable the user to store recorded footage digitally on network servers, hard drives, or NVRs, where the surveillance video is easily accessible to authorized users and offers improved searching capabilities.
Visual evidence for investigations – Surveillance cameras can provide invaluable visual evidence for investigations of criminal activity and other specific events that have taken place within or around healthcare facilities.
Remote video monitoring – Remote monitoring is an extremely helpful tool in medical facilities. IP surveillance allows hospital employees to view the security camera footage remotely from any PC with network access. Multiple sites can even communicate over the same network with all of the camera views accessible online via the Internet.
Risks of Healthcare Video Surveillance
Over-reliance – While video surveillance is an important part of any hospital's security plan, it's also critical that the appropriate level of physical security personnel is in place.
Privacy – Security cameras are effective tools for monitoring many sections of a hospital, but patient privacy should be considered when determining whether or not cameras should be placed in a facility's more private areas.
Tampering – If a security camera is tampered with and damaged, the video signal could be lost. Other security measures should be in place to make up for an interrupted signal.
Configuration of Security Cameras for Medical Facilities
Consider the following factors when determining the appropriate video surveillance installation for a hospital or healthcare facility:
What current security systems does the hospital have in place?
Is the facility properly staffed with security personnel?
Does the hospital feature multiple buildings?
Is there a parking lot connected to the hospital?
Have there been reports of criminal activity on the premises?
Is there a history of break-ins at the hospital?
Have there been any employee disputes that warranted visual investigation?
Has the hospital been burdened with costly insurance claims that can neither be proved nor disproved?
What do you consider to be the facility's most critical areas requiring video surveillance?
Place security cameras that provide views of all building entrances and exits in order to capture images of those entering and leaving the premises.
Monitor hospital hallways to keep watch over the flow of activity within the facility.
Position cameras in elevators and fire escape.
Utilize surveillance equipment to watch over the hospital's parking lots and loading areas.
Install security cameras at entrances to restricted areas to ensure that only authorized users are granted access.
Position cameras both inside and outside of the facility.