State psychiatric hospitals’ staff to get new personal alarms

NAPA — The Department of State Hospitals is replacing the lanyards used by employees at Napa’s psychiatric facility to carry personal alarms with a new design that poses no risk of strangulation, officials said.

The new alarms are expected to arrive at Atascadero State Hospital in September 2013, a hospital spokesman said last week.

Demands for an improved alarm system at Napa State Hospital intensified after the October 2010 strangulation of a psychiatric technician on the fenced hospital grounds, where the old devices did not work.

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