Perceptions of nurses working with psychiatric consumers regarding the elimination of seclusion and restraint in psychiatric inpatient settings and emergency departments: An Australian survey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Citations (Scopus)
10 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Seclusion and restraint continue to be used across psychiatric inpatient and emergency settings, despite calls for elimination and demonstrated efficacy of reduction initiatives. This study investigated nurses’ perceptions regarding reducing and eliminating the use of these containment methods with psychiatric consumers. Nurses (n = 512) across Australia completed an online survey examining their views on the possibility of elimination of seclusion, physical restraint, and mechanical restraint as well as perceptions of these practices and factors influencing their use. Nurses reported working in units where physical restraint, seclusion, and, to a lesser extent, mechanical restraint were used. These were viewed as necessary last resort methods to maintain staff and consumer safety, and nurses tended to disagree that containment methods could be eliminated from practice. Seclusion was considered significantly more favourably than mechanical restraint with the elimination of mechanical restraint seen as more of a possibility than seclusion or physical restraint. Respondents accepted that use of these methods was deleterious to relationships with consumers. They also felt that containment use was a function of a lack of resources. Factors perceived to reduce the likelihood of seclusion/restraint included empathy and rapport between staff and consumers and utilizing trauma-informed care principles. Nurses were faced with threatening situations and felt only moderately safe at work, but believed they were able to use their clinical skills to maintain safety. The study suggests that initiatives at multiple levels are needed to help nurses to maintain safety and move towards realizing directives to reduce and, where possible, eliminate restraint use.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-225
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Mental Health Nursing
Volume28
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2019

Bibliographical note

This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Keywords

  • acute inpatient units
  • emergency departments
  • mechanical restraint
  • physical restraint
  • psychiatric consumers
  • seclusion

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Perceptions of nurses working with psychiatric consumers regarding the elimination of seclusion and restraint in psychiatric inpatient settings and emergency departments: An Australian survey'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this