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Personal Safety and Security

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is committed to maintaining a safe environment both on the hospital campus and in housing. While our hospital grounds are gated and protected by uniformed officers, we have many of the same security concerns that exist anywhere.

A parent is the best person to teach a child about personal safety. Your child should understand that the hospital is a public place and safety measures should be rehearsed so that they become second nature.

For everyone’s safety, children (including siblings and guests) must be supervised at all times and may not wander freely in the hospital or on the grounds. Hospital staff members must spend their time taking care of your child and other patients. They cannot oversee the care of siblings and other child visitors.

If you have questions, call the Security Center at 901-595-4444 (extension 4444 on a hospital phone) or talk to your nurse or doctor.

Child Safety

The safety and security of your family is important to the staff at St. Jude. We make every effort to create a healing and safe environment. The following safety guidelines can help you keep your children as safe as possible while at the hospital.

  • Be sure your child wears a patient identification armband at all times while they are in the hospital. This armband is used to correctly identify your child before treatment is given and to keep your child safe.
  • Review your child’s appointment card each treatment day to know the location, time, and how long each clinic visit or treatment will last.
  • Go with your child to each appointment whenever you can. If you are unable to be with your child into the treatment area, ask the name of the staff member who will be caring for your child.
  • If you do not recognize the name of a staff member, ask for identification. Each employee wears a picture name badge.
  • Siblings of patients should be supervised by an adult at all times while on campus. It would be best to leave siblings with an adult when you bring your child to the hospital. If this is not possible, you will need to bring an adult with you to monitor siblings while your child is receiving care.
  • Report any suspicious person or behavior right away to a St. Jude security officer or call the security 24-hour control desk at 901-595-4444 or extension 4444 from a hospital phone.
  • If you are unable to find your child, tell a member of the St. Jude staff. That person will call the clinical coordinator who, along with Security, will help you find your child.
  • Carry a recent, color photograph of your child in your wallet. This can be helpful if we need to help you locate your child.

Safeguarding Your Possessions

Always remember it is up to you to safeguard your personal possessions. St. Jude is not equipped to store your valuables. Patients and family members should not bring jewelry and other valuables that they cannot keep with them at all times. A luggage checkroom is provided in the Patient Care Center first floor lobby. A security officer will be at the Patient Care Center Guest Services Desk to help you with your luggage check-in.

Shopper’s Checklist

Thieves know shoppers carry cash, checks, and credit cards to pay for purchases. They are also interested in your newly bought items. Please follow these suggestions when you are shopping.

  • Don’t carry cash if it can be avoided.
  • Do not wear expensive-looking clothing, and avoid wearing jewelry.
  • Use the car trunk, not the passenger seats, for storing packages.
  • Shop with a friend whenever possible.
  • Select a secure parking spot especially if your shopping is likely to extend after dark. Park close to the building you will be entering or park near the main flow of traffic. Avoid the edges of a parking lot. Park in a well-lit area or under a light at night. Avoid bushes that could provide cover for a criminal. Avoid suspicious-looking people and do not park next to occupied vehicles.
  • Lock all doors when exiting your vehicle. If parking in an attended garage, leave only your ignition key with the attendant.
  • Avoid overloading yourself with bags when returning to your vehicle. Have your keys ready before entering the lot.
  • Do not walk alone in a lot especially at night. If you are alone or feel uncomfortable, ask a security officer to escort you to your vehicle.
  • If you suspect someone is following you, go to the nearest populated area and try to find a security or law enforcement officer.
  • Report any crime witnessed in the parking lot.
  • Check your back seat before getting in your vehicle, and then lock all doors.
  • Never leave young children unattended.
  • Do not leave your purse unattended.
  • If your wallet or purse has been lost or stolen, take time to search for it. Thieves usually take cash and credit cards but will sometimes leave behind driver’s licenses and other items. Contact your bank as soon as you can if your credit card is lost or stolen.
  • If your keys or IDs are stolen, change your locks.

Traveler’s Checklist

When you are away from home, you are more likely to be a target of crime because you are in new, unfamiliar surroundings. The following Traveler’s Checklist offers advice about how to protect yourself when you are traveling.

  • Use credit cards rather than carrying large amounts of cash.
  • Learn to recognize the uniforms of local law enforcement officers and their vehicles.
  • Avoid meeting strangers in unknown, isolated places.
  • Do not depend on the door of your hotel room to protect you and your valuables, whether you are in the room or not. For extra protection use a chair, a drawer, a rubber wedge, or a portable travel lock.
  • In a hotel, lock balcony doors or any windows accessible from outside.
  • Locate fire exits and plan your actions in the event of a hotel fire.
  • In an automobile, use your trunk for carrying luggage.
  • Keep all your luggage in the hotel room, not in your vehicle.
  • Guard your transportation tickets.
  • Go sightseeing with a group of your own choosing and be cautious of people suggesting places to see and things to do.