As part of their regular duties, hospital security workers often interact with individuals in crisis. And like their first-responder counterparts, they also deal with operational stress.
Uppala Chandrasekera, policy director with Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), Ontario addressed both issues as the keynote speaker at the International Association for Healthcare Security and Safety, Ontario Chapter conference on March 28, 2015.
Speaking at the conference held at St. Michael’s hospital, one of Toronto’s busiest downtown hospitals, Chandrasekera provided the audience a general overview of mental health, with a focus on issues that security officers face in hospital emergency departments, especially with police-accompanied individuals apprehended under the Mental Health Act.
As part of the discussion, Chandrasekera highlighted CMHA Ontario’s work with the Human Services and Justice Coordinating Committee (HSJCC). The HSJCC is a multi-ministerial body convened by the Ontario government to improve policies and outcomes for people who come into contact with the justice system and who have needs which can be met by one or more of the provincial human services system.
The work of the HSJCC, which is supported by CMHA Ontario, was relevant to the conference as it has released an information guide for police-emergency department protocols.
Read more about the HSJCC and the info guide.