The directive is part of the Home Office’s Outcome Delivery Plan, which aims to reduce the vulnerability to terrorist or other attacks of targets deemed key national infrastructure. Should there be an incident of a more serious nature, either locally, or in the hospital itself, the Home Office directive states that all NHS hospitals need the ability to respond within 10 minutes if a ‘lockdown’ order is given – either internally by the hospital’s own Security staff, or by Police, the military, or another civilian authority.
Having standardised access control on its Salto system some years ago with what it dubs ‘a flexible mix of online and offline doors’, the hospital called in Salto Platinum Partner, Guardian Security, to recommend a solution for the upgrade. The latter’s MD, Sean Monger, explained: “What the hospital needed was the ability to lock down all its perimeter doors, plus the Emergency Department, and all the corridor doors leading to wards. To achieve this – and after a site-wide door survey – we recommended the use of Salto XS4 2.0 wall readers in combination with CU42EO control units.
“The XS4 2.0 wall readers enable the expansion of Salto access control benefits to all those doors that need to be online. In normal everyday use, they read encrypted data contained on staff ID/access cards, and communicate it to the door controller. They also allow for updating of the card via Salto Virtual Network (SVN) technology, making it possible to cancel lost or stolen cards remotely. The CU42EO SVN online control units provide the ability to control and manage multiple doors through one Ethernet connection and one IP address, making for simple, cost-effective security.”
Now, with the access control technology fitted to all relevant doors, in the event of a security incident at the hospital, with a single command to the controlling software, and utilising the ‘cause and effect’ software feature, doors can be ‘locked down’ instantly. Altogether, a mixture of SALTO online and offline doors are fitted throughout the 57-acre, 450-bed hospital site.”
Jade Mitchell, Salto Regional Support manager, South West, added: “The ability to lock down a site is something that Salto has long offered, typically in the higher education market, where there have been numerous security events on American college and university campuses. Thanks to our leadership in innovative wireless access control systems, we were able to provide a customised security solution, and now – following this Home Office directive – have convincingly helped turn Salisbury District Hospital into a smarter, more secure hospital with outstanding specification, installation, and support, via Sean and his team at Guardian Security.”