Island Health Protection Services Recognized for Brave Acts

VANCOUVER ISLAND – Two Island Health Protection Services Officers have received recognition by the International Association for Healthcare Security and Safety for exemplary performance in extraordinary circumstances.

Charles Kraeling received the Award of Valour for his brave and respectful conduct when faced with a difficult person at an Island Health hospital. Kraeling responded to a Code White call and found a knife-wielding man who was threatening himself, patients and staff in a four-bed ward. While his partner distracted the person, Kraeling was able to wrestle the weapon away and secure the ward.

Mattaius Brueckl received the Award of Distinction for his compassionate and empathetic handling of a person in need at a Victoria hospital. In response to a call of concern, Bruecki attended a person in distress on the roof of a seven-storey building. Through a calm dialogue with the individual, Bruecki was able to convince the person to attend the emergency department. It was later revealed that the person was in medical distress and was at risk of dying had immediate medical attention not been given. "Our Protection Services Officers are required to respond to calls that require both courage and compassion, often in equal measure,” said James Hanson, Island Health Vice President Operations and Support Services. “Charles and Mattaius, we are proud of your professionalism and your commitment to the safety of everyone we serve at Island Health.”

Island Health’s 90 full-time Protection Services Officers are located in health-care facilities throughout the Island and work to ensure the safety and security of patients, visitors and staff. Officers are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They respond to a variety of calls including dealing with volatile individuals, damage to property, fire safety and prevention, first aid and patient and staff escorts.

About International Association for Healthcare Security and Safety

The International Association for Healthcare Security and Safety (IAHSS) is the only organization solely dedicated to professionals involved in managing and directing security and safety programs in healthcare facilities. IAHSS is a professional association with more than 2,000 members who are healthcare security, law enforcement, safety and emergency management leaders.  

About Island Health

Island Health, one of six health jurisdictions in British Columbia, provides health care and support services to more than 765,000 people on Vancouver Island, the islands in the Salish Sea and the Johnstone Strait, and mainland communities north of Powell River. 

With more than 20,000 staff, 1,900 physician partners, 6,000 volunteers, and the dedicated support of foundations and auxiliaries, Island Health delivers a broad range of health services, including: public health services, primary health care, home and community care, mental health and addictions services, acute care in hospitals, and much more across a huge, geographically diverse region.

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Meribeth Burton
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