Even though we all like to plan for the best, it’s important to prepare for the worst and have an organized urgent care security plan.
There are several issues, ranging from robbery to violent crime, to consider when thinking about urgent care security. Even though it’s not usually the case, there is a perception that walk-in clinics will have supplies of prescription drugs and cash on hand.
In April 2015, police responded to a call from an urgent care center in Stockton, CA, because a man was acting erratic at the facility. The man reportedly searched through personal belongings of several employees and attempted to access a refrigerator holding drugs. Eventually the urgent care center was evacuated and the man was arrested. In January 2016, a woman with a handgun robbed a medical building that houses St. Luke’s Urgent Care in O’Fallon, MO.
Just this week, an urgent care center in St. Louis announced it would close on the weekends due to concerns over nearby violence.
St. Louis Public Radio reported: A gun battle outside the doors of North City Urgent Care on a Saturday last month was the last straw, said Dr. Sonny Sagar, its medical director. … Clinic personnel decided to leave after hearing a series of shots outside.
These incidents highlight some of the “worst-case” scenarios an urgent care operator could face. But they serve as important reminders about planning for the safety of your facility and employees. Here are a few tactics to consider:
The security needs of an urgent care center will vary by location and hours. A good first step is simply conducting a security analysis of the facility and coming up with a plan to respond if and when a dangerous situation occurs. The urgent care security plan should be a living document, to be updated regularly and shared with stakeholders.
For more on this topic, read “Protecting Your Urgent Care Center Against Robbery.”