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As a Registered Nurse for over 20 years I have witnessed the ongoing use and abuse of chemical restraint for elderly across Australia; it is a prevalent practice that I find is due to a number of reasons including:

  • Lack of diversional therapy resources due to lack of funding or ‘penny pinching’
  • Staff shortages
  • High staff workloads
  • Lack of experienced staff
  • Disempowered staff
  • Threat of job loss if you ‘rock the boat’
  • High staff turnover with low consistency
  • Little or no family support or other advocacy
  • Poor review and monitoring systems