Have your say on NSW Health security

04-May-2021

ASMOF has been asked by the Ministry of Health to provide feedback on their revised NSW Health Protecting People and Property (Security Manual) (provided in draft tracked changes).

In 2020 Peter Anderson released his final report into the safety of staff, patients and visitors in NSW public hospitals, and a number of these changes (including fixed duress alarm locations and revised Code Black arrangements) reflect the recommendations of this report.

According to the Ministry’s correspondence, key changes include:

  • Chapter 1 Security Risk Management has been updated to include specific standards for establishing sound governance and leadership arrangements for security risk management within Health Agencies (as set out in Recommendations 1, 2, and 5 of the Anderson Review Final Report).
  • Chapter 9 Access and Egress Control to include the specific requirements for lockdown of facilities (as set out in recommendation 21 of the Anderson Review Final Report).
  • Chapter 11 Duress Alarm Systems has updated requirements for fixed duress alarm locations - at access doors and at the rear of rooms (as set out in recommendation 51 of the Anderson Review Final Report).
  • Chapter 14 Role of NSW Health Security Staff has been updated to provide a differentiation between clinical specialling and security specialling (as set out in recommendations 27 and 81 of the Anderson Review Final Report).
  • Chapter 15 Security in the Clinical Environment to focus solely the physical environment, with other standards from this Chapter moved to other more appropriate chapters.
  • Chapter 17 Rural and Remote Health has been updated to include a link to the CRANAplus resources and to identify factors that are unique to security risk management in a smaller facility.
  • Chapter 18 Security in Pharmacies has been broadened to focus on the security of medications.
  • Chapter 23 Security of Radioactive Substances has been updated to reflect the changes in the radioactive substances legislation.
  • Chapter 26 Violence continues to focus on the prevention and management of violence and now consolidates standards that were previously contained in other Chapters to integrate all standards specific to violence prevention.
  • Chapter 26 Violence and Chapter 30 Effective Incident Management have been updated to include standards for supporting staff, reporting incidents to the police and undertaking investigations where incidents occur (as set out in recommendations 9 and 51 of the Anderson Review Final Report).
  • Chapter 27 Armed hold up has been combined with Chapter 29 Code Black Arrangements as the planned response to an armed holdup (eg calling the police and withdrawing) must be addressed in Code Black plans.
  • Chapter 29 Code Black arrangements includes standards for controlled/planned Code Black responses, for identifying code black teams at the start of the shift and reinforcing that the Code Black response must be multidisciplinary (as set out in recommendations 19, 66 and 67 of the Anderson Review Final Report).


We welcome members questions and comments on the revisions, please send your feedback to tiffanyt@asmof.org.au by no later than COB Friday, 21st May 2021. We will collate, de-identify, and provide our collective feedback to the Ministry by the requested date. You may wish to use the template provided by the Ministry of Health to provide your feedback.