Providing Security In Healthcare Settings

Providing security in healthcare settings – SIA Update, August 2022

You may have seen an email sent out in August 2022 in which the SIA made the following statement:

Security in a healthcare environment

All security operatives that perform licenced activities who are supplied under contract must have the right SIA licence to work. An SIA licence ensures that an operative has a basic qualification and has met our fit and proper person checks.

The SIA and the National Association of Healthcare Security (NAHS) recognise that it is highly likely operatives working in a health care environment will require further training.

If an operative comes into contact, or transports, patients, then they will need to have further training. This further training should be certified as complying with the Restraint Reduction Network (RRN) standards.

This training will recognise the particular challenges of managing interventions in the healthcare environment and apply important principles that operatives must consider when performing their role in a clinical environment.

The RRN and NAHS expect the use of restrictive practices in healthcare settings to be clinically led.

NHSE is looking to make these rules a requirement for NHS funded services.

Information on best practice and guidance can be found on the Restraint Reduction Network website.”

You can see the SIA’s August update online here –

I have contacted the SIA and sent the following to them:

“Hi [Name redacted]

I’ve just seen the email below sent out by the SIA.

In it it states:

“If an operative comes into contact, or transports, patients, then they will need to have further training. This further training should be certified as complying with the Restraint Reduction Network (RRN) standards”

This isn’t correct and is very misleading and possibly even discriminatory. It also places another unnecessary cost implication on security companies if the SIA is forcing them to undertake training with BILD and the RRN.

The BILD/RRN issue ONLY APPLIES to training in NHS Trust Mental Health Unit as a NHS condition of contract.

It does not apply in acute trusts or non-mental health departments or in any other area of work.

May I strongly suggest that the SIA publically retracts this statement immediately as it may well possibly breach a number of protected rights for individuals and companies including Article 8 and 14 of the Human Rights Act 1998 as it is interfering with an individual’s right to run a business and is discriminatory by the bias the SIA has announced by insisting that any further training is certified as complying with the Restraint Reduction Network Standards.”

As you can see from my email to the SIA I have asked the SIA to make a public statement about this to correct the incorrect and misleading information given out.

They informed me by email that an email would be going out last week, but as yet I have not seen it.

I have been contacted by a number of people who were really worried about this and who have asked me if what the SIA were saying is true. 

I’ve also been contacted by some Security staff in NHS Trusts who have been forwarded the SIA’s email by certain training providers who are either ill-informed or simply looking to capitalise on business by providing RRN Training to security officers in healthcare trusts.

So let’s put the matter straight.

❌ Security officers, door supervisors etc., do not need to have training in line with the RRN standards.

❌ The RRN standards are also not mandatory beyond the very limited categories set out in the Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Act 2018 Act, despite certain people telling people that it is (mandatory as defined by various dictionaries states “as required by law”)

➡️ The RRN on their website, when referring to the RRN standards state: “It is important they are applied consistently to services across education, health and social care, children and adult services across the UK and internationally for all populations, including people with mental health conditions, dementia, learning disabilities and autistic people in order to consistently minimise the risk of physical and psychological harm to all people in all settings in all nations in the British Isles.”

➡️ On the RRN website it states that: “Use of Force Act statutory guidance (2021) states “Training providers must be certified as complying with the RRN Training Standards””. 

✅ However, what the statutory guidance actually states is: “When commissioning a training provider, NHS trusts and commissioned services therefore need to ensure that training is certified (by a UKAS accredited body) as complying with the RRN Training Standards. This will help to ensure training complies with the requirements of section 5 of the act

Point to note: Section 5 of The Act” refers to each mental health unit” in England. Therefore, the RRN standards only apply to a mental health unit in a NHS hospital in England and as detailed by the very limited categories set out in the statutory guidance. 

✅ This is further confirmed by The Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Act 2018 statutory guidance – Government response to the consultation, published 07 December 2021, which states: “Some respondents raised concerns around the type of settings the Act applies to and made suggestions that the Act should apply to Accident and Emergency (A&E) departments and Section 135/136 suites. We understand the concerns raised with the use of force in different settings, however, they remain out of scope of the Act, which only applies to mental health units that provide inpatient treatment.

✅ A final point to note is that the statutory guidance states that: “Certified training’ that complies with the RRN Training Standards became a requirement of NHS commissioned services for people with learning disabilities, autism or mental health conditions in April 2020”. However, that was as a NHS condition of contract only. Not a statutory legal requirement per se.

✅ Any decision as to whether or not a security officer in a NHS trust should have training in line with the RRN standards is a decision for the trust to make. Not the SIA.

As mentioned I had been told that the SIA would be putting something out to rectify the incorrect information that they had put out about this.

As yet, no retraction has been made.

I hope this helps.