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Nursing homes employ security guards to ensure the safety of staff and residents. Like many security careers, security guards working in nursing homes are primarily responsible for patrolling the premises to ensure that the facility is kept safe from environmental and security risks, such as puddles, trespassers and intruders. Additionally, security guards working at nursing homes must be equipped to assist in a medical emergency, and therefore, should have basic First Aid and CPR skills.
Acquire military or law enforcement experience. Though this type of experience is not required to work at nursing homes as a security guard, it is helpful and looked highly upon by Human Resources Departments.
Maintain a high level of physical fitness. Security guards in nursing homes may have to respond to emergencies at a moment's notice, which may require that they run to the location of the emergency, restrain a trespasser or carry a resident to safety.
Acquire licensure as a security guard. This typically requires a training class, background check and application through a state agency. Felons are not typically able to acquire licensure as a security guard, though this requirement varies by state. The training class rarely involves firearms training. Typically, information about federal, state and local trespass laws, theft and other infractions that are common for security guards to encounter is taught in the training. The length of training varies greatly by state, from as little as eight hours to as many as 40.
The proper agency to apply with varies by state. For example, in Arizona security guards are licensed by the Department of Public Safety and in South Carolina by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.
Obtain CPR and First Aid certifications. These certifications can be completed through a variety of agencies, including the American Red Cross.
Obtain security guard experience with a private security company, which commonly hires security guards with no experience. After obtaining work experience as a security guard, seek employment at a nursing home.
Apply for security guard positions at nursing homes in your local area.
Abstain from using illegal drugs, as security guards of nursing homes are commonly randomly drug tested as a condition of their employment.
- “Career Opportunities In Law Enforcement, Security And Protective Services”; Susan Echaore-McDavid; 2005
- “Careers In Private Security: How to Get Started, How to Get Ahead”; Leigh Wade; 2002
- “Introduction to Security”; Robert Fischer and Edward Halibozek; 2008
Leigh Wittman has been writing professionally since 2007. She writes primarily on health, career advice, outdoor pursuits and travel for various websites. Wittman is a licensed nurse and studied nursing at Arizona State University.