ROCKFORD (WIFR) – The day a gunman walks into a public area and starts shooting innocent people is unpredictable, but a local hospital is doing its best to prepare.
A gunman storms the main entrance of SwedishAmerican shooting people random. Mass shootings are tragedies we hear about all too often, but now we’re getting an inside look at how one could happen, except, this is a drill.
Police stormed the hospital with weapons drawn, looking for the shooter who took his own life on the patio. Authorities even held a mock press conference.
Swedes wants to see how staff members handled this drill, with what seemed like a very real gunman on the loose. That’s why evaluators observed responses throughout the hospital; the good and areas that may need improvement.
“There were multiple victims in the concourse and I think one of them who was a little off the beat in track, it maybe took a little longer to get to that person, I have a feeling evaluators will have made not of that, and what do we do to recognize that this is a scene of chaos and we have to look everywhere for where there might be victims,” said SwedishAmerican CEO Dr. Bill Gorski.
The evaluators will be meeting next week to go over the details of the drill to see what went well and what didn’t go so well.
Overall, people seemed to be pleased with the drill. Interestingly enough, staff in the ER got a call saying one of the fake victims was a real shooting victim. At the time they didn’t know it was fake, so they stopped the drill to deal with what they thought was a real victim, however that call was still really part of the drill.
ROCKFORD (WIFR) – Recent shooting incidents, like the one today at the Washington Navy Yard, have prompted a local hospital to do a planned shooter exercise.
Whenever we hear sirens, there’s typically something wrong, and come Thursday, we’re going to hear a lot of them near Swedes, but we shouldn’t panic.
“We’re going to be doing an active shooter drill here at SwedishAmerican.”
The drill will play out at the main East State Street entrance and into the hospital. Staff members won’t know exactly what to expect, so they can act as if it’s a real emergency.
“We’re looking for things to go very well, and things that don’t,” said exercise director, Steven Kirschbaum.
“Our policy requires people that can’t evacuate to shelter in place, something bad that would happen would be if that person poked their head out the room to look to see if the shooter is there.”
If something like that did happen, then changes or training increases would be made to fix those problems.
CEO Dr. Bill Gorski says this exercise is a necessary safety precaution.
“I think it’s an unfortunate circumstance that we have to think about in our country, I wouldn’t need to remind anyone of what’s happened over the last several years with some acts of gun violence, certainly hospitals would never be exempt from that type of potential,” Dr. Gorski said.
Incoming patients will be diverted to the Heart Hospital entrance on Charles and 10th streets. During the first 15 minutes of the exercise, from 9:00-9:15 a.m. The entire drill will last about two hours, but the things that happen after the shooting drill won’t impact the main entrance so it will be open.
Lincoln Middle School, which is right near Swedish American will also be participating in the drill by going on a hard lock down, meaning the outside doors, as well as classroom doors will be locked.