UK Healthcare facilities getting new safety enhancements
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - In the wake of reported violence at hospitals across the nation, UK Healthcare is beefing up security measures at their facilities.
The plan is to invest more than $5 million in security enhancements. These plans have been in the works for a year.
If you time that out, that is right after a situation last year outside UK Chandler Hospital when police say Bryan Carroll was arrested while leaving the hospital, and investigators found weapons on him, and explosives in his car.
UK Police Chief Joe Monroe said work on these changes were already ongoing before last year’s incident, but it may have helped speed up the process.
UK’s Executive Vice President for Health Affairs Dr. Mark Newman said they are continuously assessing and improving comprehensive safety efforts to provide a safe environment.
During the last year, a security consultant has been working with the UK police department to complete the first phase of a continuous enterprise security review with an initial focus on enhancing perimeter security.
These are all steps to make the hospitals safer and better prepared.
“Any time you see a school shooting or a workplace violence incident, it always brings it home to you because you look at, that could happen to you or your organization,” Chief Monroe said. “That’s something that we’ve always been focused on at the University of Kentucky, and how we can learn from these other events across the country to prevent them from happening here.”
Chief Monroe said they are researching better ways to make UK Healthcare a weapons-free campus through screening technology and other strategic efforts.
They will also be training for de-escalation, response to active aggressor, and prevention of workplace violence.
UK police said they have an established 24-7 police presence in their emergency departments.
They have also started hiring specific officers that will be assigned to the hospital.
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