Operational Engagement & Operational Integration

I want to take a moment this week to talk about the concepts of operational engagement and operational integration in healthcare security. I believe these two concepts lay the foundation for a truly proactive security program, and when properly understood, they can create a lens through which all security functions can be measured to determine their value as force multipliers.

Let us start with the term operational engagement. This term describes a concept whereby we can expand the capability of our security forces through the communication to, and the involvement of, all staff in active security operations. The idea being expressed here is simple, effective communication helps to add value to active security operations.  Think force multiplication through the creation of additional eyes and ears. The more people know about a specific security concern, the more they can engage with that issue and provide the security department direct feedback. That feedback extends the capacity of the security organization to address the concern. This includes the development of trust through open and transparent information sharing. This is a critical process for those wishing to engage the whole organization in security efforts.

The second term is operational integration. This term focuses on the integration of security operations into clinical care to provide for the improved safety of staff as well as the overall improvement of the patient care environment. This concept takes more time to implement, and security leadership must have already laid a strong engagement foundation before integration can be effectively pursued. Operational integration takes the concept of engagement and amplifies it by directly involving security staff in patient care processes. This includes processes like engaging in bedside threat assessments, conducting proactive patrolling, and regular reporting within your organizational safety huddles, among others. The key here is to be a part of the discussion about how a patient is cared for and to have the needs and concerns of security fully expressed as a part of a collaborative care process.  

I want to unpack these concepts further, as well as the tools that can support them, over the next few weeks. But in the meantime, check out the Proactive Security Podcast: Episode 4, to hear Brine Hamilton and I discuss these concepts as a critical part of a proactive workplace violence prevention program.

What are your thoughts on operational engagement and operational integration? Can you see how these concepts help lay a stronger foundation for a proactive security organization? How do you apply them in your organization? Join the conversation in the comments below, and don’t forget to like, follow and share to support the Proactive Security Blog.

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