Objective: This paper describes how a significant reduction in restraint and seclusion rates was achieved in an acute aged person's mental health unit. Method: We analysed seclusion and restraint data in 2009. This was supplemented with a random audit of patient files and qualitative data obtained from a survey of nursing staff. We also obtained management views on changes in management practice. Results: Four major factors were found to reduce rates of restraints and seclusion. These included: (i) leadership and support from management in nursing practices, (ii) increased multidisciplinary team input, (iii) renovations to the inpatient setting, and (iv) changes in treatment-related factors such as collection of behaviour management history and improving documentation in patient files. Conclusion: Experiences such as this provide insights and practical strategies that can be applied in other aged inpatient units to reduce or eliminate rates of seclusion and restraints.
- Aged mental health services