With all the challenges healthcare workers face daily — from burnout and short-staffing to increased disease and drug exposure risks — their own physical safety shouldn’t be among them. 

Yet, nursing staff is five times more likely to experience violence than workers in any other field. Patients can be unpredictable, and security within complex healthcare environments often lacks. 

It would be impractical and expensive to hire a personal, 1:1 bodyguard to keep each nurse safer throughout their shift — but what if you could equip them with a digital bodyguard, instead?  

That’s where Real-Time Location Systems (RTLS) comes in. Offering live location data, instant emergency alerts and more, these systems are always one step ahead when the unexpected happens. 

Healthcare Workplace Violence: A Growing Problem 

Post-pandemic, improving safety in the hospital or clinic is no longer just a “can-do” for healthcare leaders, but a “must-do.” The data speaks for itself: 

  • 70% of all workplace violence occurs in healthcare settings, OSHA revealed, and 92% of nurses have seen or experienced it firsthand.  
  • Since 2020, the American Hospital Association revealed 44% of nurses reported an increase in physical violence, and 68% reported an increase in verbal violence.  
  • More than two nursing personnel were assaulted every hour in Q2 of 2022, according to the American Nursing Association. That equates to: 
    • 57 assaults per day 
    • 1,739 assaults per month 

The High Cost of Healthcare Workplace Violence 

While protecting your staff should always be the No. 1 priority, these instances of violence also have a significant impact on your entire healthcare system’s bottom line. 

In fact, workplace violence costs the United States $151 billion per year, with an average of $250,000 per incident, according to the Online Journal of Issues in Nursing. 

How RTLS Systems Can Make Your Facility Safer 

Improved Emergency Response 

An effective RTLS system can slash emergency response times from minutes to mere seconds. With Radio Frequency ID (RFID) location-enabled badges, nurses can discreetly initiate an emergency alert for assistance and team response.  And this is essential, as physical signals for help can potentially escalate the situation further. 
The emergency call instantly notifies other staff on all channels, from workstation monitors to SMS messages and alarms. And with real-time location tracking, the appropriate personnel can quickly and easily identify a healthcare worker’s specific location. 
What’s more, even if the nurse moves during a duress situation, responders will still have their current location; not just the location of where the alert originated. 
This critical visibility facilitates responses where and when it matters most, often serving as the difference between a minor incident and a true crisis. 

Integrate RTLS with West-Com’s Cutting-Edge Nurse Call Systems 

Staff Safety 

Emergency alerts can be instantly initiated from staff badges in case of panic, duress or whenever an emergency response is needed. This attention to detail is especially pertinent for patient-staff safety within behavioral healthcare environments, helping reduce risks like aggression, seclusion and violence. 

Staff Tracking 

Ultrasound technology tracks staff location live, without invading nurse or patient privacy. 

Why RTLS in Healthcare Environments is a Game-Changer for Nursing Staff Safety 

Employ Customized RTLS with West-Com 

Ready to talk specifics on safety and ROI with RTLS? Schedule a demo.