A Person Centered Approach to Eliminating Personal Alarms and Physical Restraints

$59.00 $25.00


Sue Ann Guildermann, Director of Education and Quality Improvement, Empira

Leah Erickson RN BSN, Clinical Administrator, Lake Minnetonka Shores


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A Person Centered Approach to Eliminating Personal Alarms and Physical Restraints

Restraint use in nursing homes was once an accepted standard of practice and care. However, evidence-based research demonstrated that restraints cause declines in physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being. As staff came to understand the detrimental effects of restraints and changed practice, the use of personal alarms as an alternative became widespread. Again, a new body of evidence has illustrated that personal alarms also negatively impact the safety and well-being of residents. Alarmingly, despite the evidence, use of restraints and alarms continues. A Minnesota consortium of 24 nursing homes has identified that when all personal alarms and restraints were removed, the number of residents who fell, the number of falls that occurred and the recurrence of falls for the same resident (frequent falls) decreased. Alarms create noise, fear and confusion for the person wearing them as well as those around them. Residents and staff experienced a calmer, happier home environment when the alarms and restraints were eliminated. Join this webinar to learn how these homes accomplished the removing of restraints and alarms, what their challenges were and the outcomes they achieved beyond what they imagined. A Director of Nursing from one of these homes will share their journey and answer questions.


Learning Objectives: 

  1. Discuss the inappropriateness of using restraints and personal alarms and their impact on the safety and well-being of residents
  2. Describe the evidence that indicates the elimination of restraints and alarms can lead to a decrease in falls, incontinence and skin breakdown and can create a more tranquil, home environment
  3. Identify the operational procedures for removing current restraints and personal alarms and for preventing the use of future restraints and personal alarms
  4. Identify alternate interventions for keeping residents safe other than the use of restraints and alarms.


Sue Ann Guildermann has over thirty-five years of experience providing education, leadership and consultation to non-profit and for-profit long-term care organizations. She is a Registered Nurse with a BA and MA in communication and adult education. Sue Ann has been responsible for the education of the leadership, management and direct care staff of Empira’s homes and oversaw the implementation of a Fall Prevention program, which established an alarm and restraint elimination environment. She has taught in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota and received a Minnesota Care Providers Association award for “recognition of her outstanding leadership in educational programming.”


Leah Erickson is a Clinical Administrator at Lake Minnetonka Shores, a nursing home near the metro area of Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota.  She is a 1975 diploma graduate from St. Luke’s School of Nursing, completing her BSN from Bemidji State in 1992. Ms. Erickson has been a RN in LTC for 31years filling first the position of staff nurse and then the Director of Nursing for over 25 years.  She has been both an adjunct and full time instructor in the Minnesota State College System.




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