Expanding Under Lock And Key

Feb 1, 2008 12:00 PM


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In 2000, the former Good Samaritan Hospital became part of Banner Health, an organization that operates 20 hospitals in seven western states. With 17,000 employees in Arizona, the company is the state's second largest employer. Now known as Banner Good Samaritan, the downtown Phoenix hospital is the main health care facility in Arizona and has been named one of the top 100 cardiovascular hospitals in the country.

The growing 750-bed facility also encompasses various clinics and office buildings, in addition to the main structure. Further expansion is scheduled to include a cancer center and a second tower that will feature private rooms. In addition, funds have been allocated to remodel the entire hospital on a floor-by-floor basis.

Since no key standard has existed, as the complex grew and more buildings were added over the past 25 to 30 years, several different key systems were used in various applications. In some cases, one brand was used on the exterior doors and another on the interior doors.

Several keyways from Schlage, Colorado Springs, Colo., and those of other manufacturers were among the systems used on interior doors, but the key system had reached its maximum expansion. Service issues with some of the older key systems also had become a problem.

With the start of the major remodeling project, Head Locksmith Larry Mizen thought it was an appropriate time to re-key the entire facility. To develop a key system that would accommodate the remodeling and planned growth at the main Phoenix site, as well as other locations in the state, Mizen worked with Schlage Key System Consultant Dawn Graves to develop an Owner Standard Specification for keys and other major door hardware components.

Moving to a new standard

The standard, which will be used by Banner facilities throughout the state, includes Schlage D end-user restricted medium-security keyways on all interior doors with Schlage Everest Primus on any areas that require greater security. The Everest Primus is a high-security keyway that provides a legally backed guarantee of geographic key exclusivity, which means that keys cannot be made without Banner's authorization.

The two key systems are designed to be mixed in a single system and are upgradeable, allowing security and cost to be tailored to each application. Together, they give Banner 10 compatible keyways with sufficient capacity to handle future expansion and provide better control. Interchangeable cores are used to simplify re-keying.

Mizen says he is now able to maintain separate master keys for each building and also provide a grand master key that security can use anywhere. The planned cancer center, while a part of Banner, will actually be a partnership and will have its own master key and keyway.

To control access from the parking structure adjacent to the main building, Banner installed Schlage electric strikes and card readers on entries from the three levels of the structure. With all the various buildings at the downtown location, Mizen estimates that the number of doors runs into the thousands.

“The tower itself is 12 floors high and each has 48 pods,” Mizen explains. “Each of those also includes closets and offices. With the six-story west tower, the outpatient surgery center and other ancillary buildings, there are probably at least a few thousand doors.”

In addition to the key system, the new standards cover such products as Von Duprin exit devices, LCN door closers, Steelcraft doors and frames and related Glynn-Johnson door hardware. Standardizing on hardware specifications not only simplifies planning for retrofitting and new construction but also reduces spare parts stocks and maintenance training.

The key system and hardware upgrades are being implemented as remodeling or expansion projects are undertaken. For example, the main site's corporate building has been completely renovated from top to bottom, according to Mizen. Other Banner facilities in Arizona are moving to adopt the new standards as well, including the Banner Gateway Medical Center, a new hospital being built in Mesa.

Security System Deployment By Bed Size
CURRENTLY DEPLOYED <201 BED SIZE 201-400 401+
RADIO COMMUNICATIONS 98% 96% 98% 100%
VIDEO SURVEILLANCE 93% 85% 97% 98%
DIGITAL VIDEO RECORDING 88% 77% 91% 96%
PANIC ALARMS 90% 77% 96% 98%
ELECTRONIC ACCESS CONTROL 88% 79% 90% 96%
KEY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM 81% 82% 85% 77%
INTRUSION/BURGLAR ALARMS 77% 59% 84% 89%
INFANT TRACKING/TAGGING 63% 54% 69% 69%
PDAS OR MOBILE DEVICES 36% 30% 40% 39%
PATIENT-WANDERING SYSTEM 31% 27% 30% 38%
ASSET TRACKING/RFID 17% 14% 18% 21%
ELECTRONIC VISITOR MANAGEMENT 14% 8% 14% 21%
DETECTION EQUIPMENT 11% 11% 11% 12%
WALK-THROUGH METAL DETECTORS 7% 4% 6% 12%
SOURCE: GE Security

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