Infant and pediatric security system donated by Dakota Hospital Foundation

Thanks to the generosity of the Dakota Hospital Foundation, Sanford Medical Center Vermillion has added a new layer of security to help ensure the safety of its youngest and most vulnerable patients. The medical center recently installed the Hugs® infant protection and Pedz™ system from Stanley Healthcare Solutions to safeguard its infants, children and vulnerable adult patients from the threat of abduction or flight.

"Infant protection systems provide an effective deterrent against the abduction of infants," said Mylynn Hanson, chief nursing office, Sanford Medical Center Vermillion. "The Hugs system has been configured to operate in a number of ways that readily support our existing security systems."

Each infant wears a comfortable and unobtrusive Hugs tag attached by the means of a soft tamperproof strap around his or her ankle. The computer console displays floor plans of the facility showing tag locations with monitored areas and doors indicated. Alarms are generated if the strap is cut or tampered with, if the infant is moved to an unauthorized zone, or if the tag?s signal is no longer detected. The system can be made to activate other devices such as cameras, door locks, public address systems, pagers, sirens, elevators, or other alarms.

"In the event of an attempted abduction, the Hugs system immediately informs security and nursing staff precisely where the alarm has occurred," said Hanson. "This information is vital in ensuring a quick response during an abduction or flight attempt."

Kristen Morrow, RN at Sanford Medical Center Vermillion submitted the idea for installation of the infant security system as part of the Dakota Hospital Foundation Employee Idea Challenge.

Morrow's idea was selected by the board for implementation. Morrow received a $1,000 cash award for her efforts in submitting the proposal and the Dakota Hospital Foundation Board made the commitment to ensure the system would be funded for installation.

"This new security system is an important addition to the medical center. We are fortunate to have such a committed Hospital Foundation. Not only to inspire our staff to identify a project that would fulfill an unmet need for Sanford Vermillion but to also make the financial commitment to see it through," said Mary Jo Olson, MD, Sanford Clinic Vermillion.

In conjunction with the infant security, the medical center also implemented the Pedz™ component of the Hugs system. Similarly, the Pedz™ system provides multiple features that are designed for the clinical realities of protecting pediatric and vulnerable adult patients.

Similar to the Hugs system, every patient wears a Pedz tag on the wrist or ankle, and every exit point of the department is electronically monitored. Patients may move freely within the protected zone, but cannot leave unless authorized by medical center staff.

Patients can be allowed to pass through some exits without causing an alarm. Access can be tailored to each patient based on their age and risk factors, as well as restricted based on the time of day.

Each child can personalize the Pedz tag with skins and stickers, to encourage them to wear the tag.

Sanford Medical Center Vermillion is dedicated to the safety and security of all patients. Sanford Vermillion is a member of Sanford Health.

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