A growing body of empirical evidence documenting the negative effects and the limited effectiveness of physical restraints continues to shape policy and professional standards. In addition to occurrences of serious harm from restraint devices, ethical concerns about care with dignity have supported re-evaluation of restraints in all settings for all patients. Lessons from considerable research conducted in nursing homes and clinical experience with restraint reduction in long-term care facilities are applicable to acute care settings, where restraint-free care can and should be embraced.

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