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Twenty-One Point Home Healthcare Personal Protection Plan

The Fallston Group recently agreed to head to Chicago to speak to more than 2,000 healthcare professionals from the United Healthcare network. Safety and Security of home healthcare providers was the lead topic. In an effort to assist the many home healthcare professionals in the field, we’re making a few safety tips available in an effort to enhance the well-being of these hard-working men and women:

  • Always confirm appointments with clients before your visit
  • Make sure you have accurate directions to your client’s home
  • Let your employer and coworkers know where you are at all times (arrival and departure times)
  • Know the location of the nearest police or fire station – they are a safe haven in the event of an emergency
  • Keep your car in good working condition – don’t become stranded
  • Keep your vehicle doors and windows locked at all times
  • Have an extra set of keys with you in the event you lose them or lock them in your car by accident
  • Park in well-lit areas, away from large trees and shrubs; avoid parking next to cargo vans or large trucks
  • Use the shoulder of the road or parking lot to talk on the phone or review directions – don’t text and drive
  • Avoid leaving items visible inside the car during visits – lock equipment and personal items in the trunk out of plain view
  • Before getting out of your vehicle, make sure no one is around that makes you feel uncomfortable – don’t be afraid to drive away and reschedule
  • Encourage patients to put their front porch lights on prior to your arrival – always carry a flashlight with you at all times, even during the day
  • Carry a whistle as noise will deter offenders – carry police-grade pepper spray if your policies allow (not foam as it is less effective) and get the proper training
  • Trust your instincts – if it doesn’t feel right, it is not
  • Don’t touch your client’s pets; animal injuries can be very harful or fatal
  • Watch where you step to avoid injury
  • Watch for potential signs of violence inside of the home – firearms, substance abuse, alcohol, broken furniture, etc.
  • Maintain a visual exit and ensure the path is clear in case you need to escape the home quickly
  • Cut your visit short if you begin to get verbally abused or the client is irrational in behavior
  • Do your paperwork at home or in the office – not in the car or in the client’s home (distracted people become victims of crime)
  • Take a self defense class by certified instructors as it will build skills, confidence and the proper mindset

If you would like more information about the safety and security of in-home providers, please don’t hesitate to contact the Fallston Group at info@fallstongroup.com or 410.420.2001. The Fallston Group is a crisis management and communications company committed to building, strengthening and defending reputations – www.FallstonFroup.com.

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