"Patient care and safety are our top priority, and we saw the cameras as a key part of our broader strategy to maintain a safe and secure environment for everyone - protecting our staff and patients and hopefully de-escalating potentially violent situations.
And with the cameras now in place there’s been a noticeable impact: they definitely have a deterring effect on potential aggressors. Also, in situations where aggression does occur, their ability to record incidents has helped in swiftly addressing them and providing clear evidence for any necessary follow-up actions.
Anyone considering adopting this technology into their site must pilot it. We needed a ward where we had high incidents of violence and aggression so we could quickly measure whether the cameras made a difference, so that meant A&E.
I remember there was some apprehension from staff – in fact we conducted surveys before and after the pilot, which show a noticeable shift in attitudes. So, before the trial, 63% saw the need for body cameras. After experiencing their benefits first-hand, this number jumped to 96%.
When people know they are being recorded, their behaviour often changes, they calm themselves down. The cameras used in healthcare have a front-facing screen, showing that recording is in progress, and it’s this that acts as a deterrent.
One might assume that cameras could create a barrier or a sense of mistrust. However, we've found the opposite to be true in most cases. When patients and visitors understand that cameras are there for everyone's safety, it often leads to a heightened sense of mutual respect. It's about creating a safe environment for both staff and patients."