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We write articles mainly about visitor management, which helps you to know who is (or has been) in your facility. It is just part of an organization’s physical security processes that protect people and property within and around a building or campus.



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A busy hospital lobby balances security, health, and efficiency

by Andrew Jones

The nearly 1,200 daily visitors to The Valley Hospital in Ridgewood, New Jersey, are all required to check in with reception to ensure they have a purpose for being at the facility. The Reception Services Department uses a combination of disposable and reusable “Badge Tags” that helps keep patients and employees safe, prevents guest exposure to toxins, and saves valuable staff resources.

The hospital prints adhesive I.D. labels using two computer programs, one for visitors and the other for vendors. These badges are applied to color-coded Badge Tags, with clips, to instruct visitors on the proper procedure for exiting the building and, more important, to make it easier for staff members to tell that the wearer has signed in at the reception desk and is now in the correct area of the hospital.

“We needed patient and guest badge tags, for our central healthcare facilities, that met high security standards without sacrificing patient privacy,” says Liz Carpanzano, Reception & Security Support Supervisor at The Valley Hospital. “The THRESHOLD team took our feedback seriously and were able to offer us badges that reflect our company’s values and standards, at a good price point, without sacrificing quality.”

The Valley Hospital team that worked with THRESHOLD to develop its current visitor badging process: Daniel Coss, Director of Security; Patient and Family Advisors Gary Paton, Paul Redfield and Jean Neri; and Liz Carpanzano, Reception & Security Support Supervisor. (Valley Health System photo)

Since most guests visit some kind of patient care area, the Badge Tags used are disposable. So, instead of having to disinfect thousands of badges a week so they can be safely reused, the hospital participates in a recycling program (whereby the used badges are recycled) and issues new Badge Tags every time.

In the case of large meetings that take place outside of a nursing unit, the hospital issues “Specialty Badges,” which are Badge Tags that fully describe the destination and purpose of the visit, without the need of a personalized adhesive label.

These Specialty Badges are laminated on both sides for durability, so they can be used over and over. The number of attendees to these events comprises a small percentage of the hospital’s daily visitors, plus they’re less likely to be exposed to patient-related contaminants, so cleaning these badges for reuse requires relatively little staff time.

By using Badge Tags in this way, the hospital cleverly balances security, sanitization, and efficiency while identifying more than a thousand visitors a day.

“Valley has been using these badges for seven years and is still very satisfied with the product,” says Ms. Carpanzano. “THRESHOLD’s customer service and turn-around time is also exemplary and commendable. We look forward to continuing our relationship with them as a vendor of choice.”

Visitors departing The Valley Hospital’s lobby deposit their badges in a recycling container (see background). (Valley Health System photo)

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Posted on 6/5/2019