New Visitor Security System at Sentara

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Provided by Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center

Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center in Woodbridge has created a new Visitor Badging System (VBS) now in effect for all visitors entering the hospital at 2300 Opitz Blvd.

Visitors will be asked to:

  • Show a photo ID at reception, such as a driver license, state-issued ID, or military ID.
  • Tell receptionists at the visitor badging station their destination.
  • Have a photo taken for a visitor badge, to be worn visibly at all times.

Additionally, all individuals must lock firearms, knives, and other weapons in their vehicles before entering the hospital.

Balancing Welcome and Safety

Sentara hospitals are seeking the balance between being welcoming and being safe. Visitor badging has been shown to reduce violence against staff and limits opportunities for theft of personal items from patients or employees.

The VBS expands a long-standing badge protocol in Family Maternity Centers, which helps ensure that everyone entering those secure units is appropriate. The broader goal is to have every person in Sentara hospitals wear a badge, including employees and providers, vendors, outpatients, and visitors.

Health care workers suffer 73 percent of all workplace violence, mostly from patients and visitors. The Visitor Badging System encourages respectful interaction between visitors with staff. Sentara leaders believe that most visitors will welcome VBS to help them enjoy a safer experience.

The first Sentara Commitment to patients is to ‘Always keep you safe.’ This includes quality care and a safe healing environment. Visitor badging is one tool to help keep that promise.

Sentara Healthcare is rolling out the new VBS at its 12 hospitals in Virginia and North Carolina.


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