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Camden Clark Medical Center upgrades infant security


The Parkersburg News and Sentinel

PARKERSBURG, W.Va.  — Camden Clark Medical Center recently added security features to further protect its youngest patients.

Desmond Bigley, the first baby born at Camden Clark Medical Center in 2017, is shown with the Safe Place security transmitter around his ankle on Jan. 2.
(Photo by Evan Bevins)

The Safe Place system was added to the maternity/special deliveries unit in December, featuring a small transmitter box attached to a bracelet around a newborn’s ankle.

The transmitter allows staff to track the infant’s location in the ward on their computers and sounds an alarm if the child gets too close to the elevators or fire escape doors, said Stephanie Taylor, registered nurse.

Should a child be taken from the ward, the computer will be able to determine their last location.

“It’s an upgrade that we’ve been trying to do for a while,” Taylor said.

There has not been a specific problem that necessitated the upgrade, she said; it’s just a matter of using technology to provide optimal safety measures.

In addition, another bracelet with an identifying number is placed on the mother and two more are put on the infant, said Tammy Hoffman, clinical nurse manager.

“Each bracelet has matching information, and they are not removed until just before discharge,” she said.

“In addition, one support person is given a bracelet with the baby’s bracelet number on it that identifies them as the person other than the mother who may take the baby from the nursery.”

The unit already had a number of security measures in place, with all entry, exit and nursery doors locked. Only people with proper security clearance or an electronic key card can enter them, Hoffman said. Anyone attempting to enter the unit must check in with a security guard first.

Staff is getting used to the new system, including false alarms, such as when a baby tugs on the bracelet. Security is notified and will check on any alarm.

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