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Like-minded organisations in pursuit of restraint-free services

Ensuring Harmony not Harm

Steve GarveySteven Garvey, Patient Handling Trainer at Worcestershire NHS Trust discusses the key points from his workshop at the forthcoming November Restraint Reduction Conference, exploring measures employed to reduce the use of restraint within the Trust. These include the introduction of MAPA® (Management of Actual or Potential Aggression) Ambassadors to help promote MAPA® principles and values.


We know that conflict and the need for containment can arise as a result of widely varying factors, so action is required on many difference fronts, to enable staff to deliver good treatment in a supportive and low-stress environment to promote recovery.

This workshop will explore how the Trust’s MAPA Ambassadors have been able to support developments in practice that have occurred within Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust since the introduction of the government’s Positive and Safe programme. These have included:

  • Establishing an ongoing organisational restraint reduction programme.
  • A phased introduction of the Safewards concept for all mental health inpatient units to improve patients’ experience.
  • Raising standards of incident reporting.
  • Promoting the MAPA philosophy directly within teams and acting as a link between staff teams and MAPA trainers as part of the national High Impact Actions campaign.
  • Reviewing and updating approaches to the assessment and support of patients whose behaviours may challenge, including the develop and a generic template that can be adapted to the needs of patients in different areas.

The implications of Positive and Safe are far-reaching and we’re finding layers of questions as we go along. This workshop provides an opportunity to consider where we are, where we’re going and the role Ambassadors can play in supporting improvements to practice.

The Ensuring Harmony not Harm workshop is scheduled to take place on the morning of Friday 13 November.