Local Hospitals Prepare for Active Shooter Situations
Gun violence broke out after a domestic dispute between a gunman and his ex-fiance’ in around Chicago’s Mercy Hospital Monday afternoon. When it was over, four people were dead, including the gunman.
Local medical professionals, like Troy Regional Medical Center’s CEO Ronnie Dean, say those situations are becoming too common.
“We’re about being a safe healing place. And you really don’t want to think about an active shooter, a firearm, and someone taking life. We’re here to save lives. ”
Saving lives are what hospital employees are trained to do. However, hospital employees must now train for different emergencies, like an act of gun violence.
“We practice ‘run, hide, fight.’ Thats one of three options,” Dean explained.
Dean says employees need to be aware of surroundings and possible dangers. Calling 9-1-1 is the first thing employees are trained to do. Looking for the nearest exits and creating an escape plan can also help.
But Dean says helping patients get to safety is something that shouldn’t be taken lightly.
“We ask them to leave and go to a secure place. Create a barrier. Create distance between themselves and where the active shooter occurrence is happening,” Dean says.
If running or hiding doesn’t work, a hospital employee’s last resort is to fight their way out.
“That’s the last option and if we have to act intentionally, we try to fight our way out of the situation. But that is not the first option. Hopefully we’re buying time, letting the authorities arrive. We’ve secured the area the best that we can.”
To learn more about “RUN, HIDE, FIGHT” and what to do in an active shooter situation, click here.