How a Sentara Healthcare hospital is scrapping patient restraints to improve care

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After discovering its use of patient restraints failed to fall under best practice guidelines, South Boston, Va.-based Sentara Halifax Regional Hospital redesigned its restraint policy by leveraging a quality system.

Hospital staff worked to resolve this issue, which was detailed in a case study by certification body DNV GL Healthcare. Sentara staff revised its patient restraint policy by using a quality system called ISO 9001. The system was originally developed by the manufacturing sector that DNV GL adapted for hospitals and health systems.

As a result of the system, Sentara Halifax reduced patient restraint use by over 95 percent. Additionally, the number of extubations by patients dropped by two-thirds and patients' length of stay on ventilators decreased.

"This was huge for us," said Nicole Spence, MSN, RN, Sentara Halifax's manager of patient services.

DNV GL accredits more than 500 hospitals across 49 states.

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