*Healthcare Security Spending Trends: Report Preview
By Garett Seivold
Some of the nation’s most established hospitals and health systems—some of biggest brands in healthcare delivery—are losing money. According to the Harvard Business School, several big-name hospitals reported net losses in operating margins last year. In an analysis by Forbes magazine, it isn’t a consequence of declining revenue, or increased competition, or a decline in the need for medical services.
Those factors are actually becoming less of a drag on profits. No, it’s because they have overspent—on expensive equipment and highly paid specialists—and because they have tolerated inefficiencies. For hospital CEOs, therefore, cost is the lens through which they see everything. Security included, regardless of the importance with which they may speak of it.
That dichotomy—security is a greater priority, no additional funding for security is available—is clearly a source of frustration for some security directors. From one who complained that administrators refuse to adhere to its own staffing matrix for how many security officers they should deploy, to the one who says he is envious of counterparts in other industries in which advanced security technology is more common.
Many healthcare organizations have made substantial investments in security technologies, notably access control and video surveillance. However, a smaller percentage of healthcare security directors today, compared to 7 years ago, think spending on security at their institution is enough for a truly safe and secure environment.
Here is some revealing data on security solution purchasing patterns:
- Among other departments, IT and Operations have the most involvement in the purchase of security technology, followed by information security.
- Respondents reported that they intend to spend an average of $111,000 on security products in 2018.
- The overall median figure is substantially lower, a consequence of many hospitals indicating that they currently have a freeze on the purchase of security products.
- Survey respondents most often identified access control systems—either expanding or improving them—as their top security product priority.
- Expanding or upgrading video surveillance systems and cameras is the second security product priority among responding healthcare facilities. Visitor management systems were also identified as a top product priority by a significant percentage of respondents.
- Others are aiming to upgrade their emergency response with technologies, such as central lockdown capabilities and emergency duress devices.
*This is an excerpt from an upcoming major report, “Critical Issues in Healthcare Security: A Benchmark Report.” For more information, please contact David Beck at email@example.com.
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