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US Patent # RE42,991 & RE44,039 December 2018 
In This Issue

This Month's Article 

What is a Sentinel Event?

About Us

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What is a Sentinel Event? 

The Joint Commission defines sentinel events as occurrences to patients in medical facilities “…involving death or serious physical or psychological injury, or the risk thereof." As you will note from the pie chart above, patient suicides are a comparatively frequent sentinel event identified by The Joint Commission. The Door SwitchTM was developed to mitigate the most common method of suicide employed in medical facilities—hanging using a door as a ligature point.

Please visit The Joint Commission for more information on sentinel events.

About Us 

The Door SwitchTM is the original top-of-the door ligature attempt warning system and holds U.S. Patents RE 42,991 and RE 44,039. We have been serving mental health professionals since 2006.

Each Door SwitchTM is a pressure sensor activated by approximately one to two pounds of downward pressure applied to the top, rather than the face (front or back surfaces), of the door. With system activation at the top of the door, ligature devices applied from either side of the door result in system alerts. Hospital staff are notified of system alerts by a combination of audible alarms, strobes, and door identification provided at a keypad typically located at a nurses’ station. The system utilizes proven Honeywell electronic components, including the Honeywell Vista 128BPT panel as the controller.

The Honeywell Vista 128BPT control panel provides an event log that records the times and dates of 512 events. The controller records the application of pressure to one of the system’s Door SwitchesTM, the removal of that pressure, and the turning of a key switch to silence the alarm. Logged events can be viewed from the keypad or downloaded to a computer and printed.

The Door SwitchTM has been installed in mental health facilities across the country. We are proud to state that we have many satisfied mental health facility clients and can provide you with their contact information for reference purposes.

For additional information, a demonstration of The Door SwitchTM, or a free quote, please call or email us.  

Debunking the Myth:  Holidays & Suicide 

The idea that suicides occur more frequently during the holiday season is a long perpetuated myth. The Annenberg Public Policy Center (APPC) has been tracking media reports on suicide since 2000. Nearly two-thirds of the newspaper stories linking the holidays and suicide over the 2016-17 holiday season supported a false connection between the two, the APPC has found.
The annual analysis of newspaper stories in the Nexis database from the holiday season found that 64 percent of the stories on the topic last year recycled the myth that the suicide rate rises during the holidays, as compared with 36 percent that debunked it.
APPC has tracked news coverage on this issue for 18 years, starting in 1999. In only two of those years have more than 60 percent of stories debunked the myth. In most of those years there have been more newspaper stories supporting the myth than debunking it.

Research director of the AAPC, Dan Romer, states: “It’s disappointing to see that this myth hasn’t gone away. After two years in which debunking stories dominated, we’ve seen a comeback in misinformation about the holiday-suicide myth.”
In fact suicide is the lowest in December and peaks in the spring and fall, a pattern that has not changed over the past few years. Suicide remains a major public health problem, as it is the 10th leading cause of death for all Americans.
So why is this myth still a myth? While depressive thoughts and stress is on the rise during the holidays, the actual acts of suicide are not. This leads to a possible conclusion being that the news is perpetuating the myth because it’s a more interesting story.
“Feature writers and columnists as well as news reporters may mean well when they cite the suicide myth,” Romer said. “But it actually doesn’t help those who may be experiencing suicidal thoughts to tell them that this is the time of year that others are taking their lives. Research has shown that this kind of information can be harmful, and recommendations for reporting on suicide specifically argue against citing trends in suicide that are unsubstantiated or false.”  For more information on this topic, click here

The Door Switch wants to continue the fight for more awareness and provide additional resources to dispel the myths about mental health issues and solutions for safety issues. We also continue to strive to provide a product that keeps the hospital environment safe. We continue to be committed to better practices and procedures in mental health community. For information concerning our safety product, please click here


The Door SwitchTM  



The Door SwitchTM 
11772 Westline Industrial Drive
St. Louis MO 63146

(877) 998-5625 toll free

US Patent No. RE42,991 and RE44,039

 US Patent No. RE42,991 & RE44,039                                                                                    

11772 Westline Industrial Drive
Saint Louis, MO 63146
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