Ethical Dilemma Factor in Regarding Physical Restraints to Elderly of Female Nurses with the Living Together Experience


Purpose: The aim of this study was to illuminate the connotation of “dilemma” regarding the use of physical restraint on elderly patients as represented by female nurses working in general wards at community hospitals who also live with elderly adults at home. Method: The study used the questionnaire method with an independently prepared questionnaire. Participants: The objective of the study was explained to the persons in charge of nursing in the selected 17 hospitals, and 1929. Finally, this study of participants were 524 female nurses working in general 54 wards (excluding the emergency wards of psychiatry, pediatrics, obstetrics, outpatients, operating rooms, and intensive care units) at community hospitals who also live with elderly adults at home. Results and conclusions: Cronbach’s overall coefficient for the 20 items of dilemma was high (0.78) and the factor analysis extracted four dilemma factors as having a characteristic value of 1 (Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin measure value = 0.81) with a cumulative contribution ratio of 64.5%. The high Cronbach’s for these items (0.86, 0.88, 0.87 and 0.81) confirmed the internal consistencies. With respect to the dilemma where nurses working in general wards at community hospitals who also live with elderly adults at home are faced with the physical restraint of elderly persons, four factors in the clarification of the dilemma were extracted: accomplishment of medical-treatment and accident prevention, characteristic features in nursing for elderly patients with dementia, healthcare professional relationship in nursing for elderly patients with dementia, and priorities on the accident prevention for elderly patients with dementia. Therefore, the construction of four systems to cope with these dilemmas is suggested. These systems would enable practising nurses to: (i) institution of policies to encourage discussion between nurses and other medical staff to reach consensus on treatment; (ii) allocating elderly care specialists to wards to promote alternatives to restraints; (iii) establishment of safety standards to define nurses’ responsibilities; and (iv) institution of continuous ethical education for nurses.

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M. Yamamoto, S. Mizuno and M. Aota, "Ethical Dilemma Factor in Regarding Physical Restraints to Elderly of Female Nurses with the Living Together Experience," International Journal of Clinical Medicine, Vol. 3 No. 5, 2012, pp. 328-334. doi: 10.4236/ijcm.2012.35064.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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