Practical approaches to reduce the use of restrictive practices on people with disabilities within the disability service provider sector
The Social and Global Studies Centre and the National Disability Services (NDS) have been engaged by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) – Office of Professional Practice (OPP) to lead a two year research project to develop practical approaches to reducing the use of restrictive practices on people with disabilities within the disability service provider – client interaction.
The most recent Restrictive Intervention Data System data shows that while the use of some restrictive interventions are decreasing, the use of chemical and physical restraint is increasing. In addition, certain people are at risk of experiencing restraint for extended periods (i.e. over years). Research shows that the most effective solution to restraint reduction and elimination is a whole of organisation change strategy.
‘The Roadmap for Achieving Dignity without Restraint (2012)’ was a resource developed by Associate Prof. Paul Ramcharan that draws on Huckshorn’s six core strategies (Huckshorn 2005) on reducing restraint and seclusion such as leadership, workforce development, an debriefing tools, all based in a human rights framework.
In 2013/14 a pilot of ‘The Roadmap’ resource was tested in a small six-month project. The pilot involved measuring base levels of knowledge and understanding of use of restrictive practices of managers and staff supporting people within disability service provider organisations, providing an intervention training day to these managers and staff, and then remeasuring knowledge and understanding of use of restrictive practices, followed by implementation organisational strategies detailed in The Roadmap training day.
The 2017-2018 ‘Roadmap’ extends The Roadmap’s implementation with a sufficiently larger sample of managers and staff supporting people with disability, and with a testing of outcomes over a two year period. It will deliver new training tools and resources based on The Roadmap big ticket items – choice, support worker reflection, positive histories, risk and benefit, human rights and addressing trauma related behaviours of concern – plus incorporating additional aspects of the National Disability Services’ (NDS) Zero-tolerance framework into the research design.
The aims of the project are to:
Since 2007, the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) in Victoria, through the Office of Professional Practice (OPP) has supported the adoption and roll-out of human rights-based approaches to educate about, and support reduction and elimination of, restrictive practices in Victoria. The Office of Professional Practice (OPP) has supported leadership; developed tools and resources and established the Restrictive Intervention Data System (RIDS) to evaluate use of restrictive interventions over time.