Reducing Restraints

It’s not only about safety; it’s about dignity. Patients have a right to be free from restraints.

A physical restraint is any device, material, or equipment that prevents a resident from moving about freely. Our goal is to help nursing homes contribute to a 40% national reduction in healthcare-acquired conditions (HACs) due to pressure ulcers and restraints.

According to the Code of Federal Regulations, 42 Section 483.13 (a), “the resident has the right to be free from any physical or chemical restraints imposed for the purpose of discipline or convenience, and not required to treat the resident’s medical symptoms.” Therefore, a physical restraint may only be used to treat a medical symptom after a comprehensive assessment identifies interventions that allow the resident to reach the highest level of functioning.

Research has found that residents who are not restrained tend to be less agitated, less fatigued, and more social. They exhibit greater independence with mobility, feeding, dressing, and strength. The resident’s autonomy and dignity improves without the confinement of physical restraints.

A resident is more than a statistic. A resident is someone’s mother, father, or grandparent. One day, that resident might be you. Would you want to be free from restraints?

Restraint Collaborative Toolkit 


For more information about our Restraint Reduction Collaborative contact Beth Hercher, Quality Improvement Specialist at 800-528-2655.