When a patient enters a facility for behavioral health care read here, they may be in a state of vulnerability and have thoughts of hurting themselves or others. This can lead to a ligature risk in many instances.
Any point where a patient can attach a rope, cord, sheet of bed or any other material that could be tied or looped to create an attachment point, which may be used to hang or strangle a person, is a ligature.
One-on one observation can be enough in some situations to reduce ligature risk, but how about in other areas, like resident bedrooms, where it is impossible for one-on one observation?
Create Resident Rooms that are Ligature-Resistant
In behavioral health facilities, resident rooms are less supervised than common areas. Therefore, creating an environment that is resistant to ligatures will be crucial for the safety of residents. Each resident room must be equipped with furniture that is resistant to ligatures.
Anti-ligature or ligature resistant furniture is furniture that lacks any points at which a material such as cord or rope could be tied down or bound.
Anti-ligature furniture can be used in the resident’s rooms. This includes beds, nightstands and storage shelves. Desks are also available.
You can use alternatives to ligature points such as coat hooks and pipes, curtains rods and ceiling fixtures, and door hinges and handles.
Conducting Environmental Risk Assessments
To reduce the risk of ligatures, it is important to conduct an assessment outside the resident’s rooms. Other objects which could be weaponized or misused should also be evaluated and possibly replaced.
Every area that a patient could occupy within your facility should be assessed carefully in order to create an appropriate plan for addressing and reducing ligature hazards in your facility.
Pay attention to the following areas: ceilings, outlets, glass types, door and hardware, loose nails, furniture, and other items that could be used as weapons.
To ensure the safety of residents, it is important to examine carefully all furniture both in resident rooms and communal areas.
Installing anti-ligature furnishings is one of the best ways to minimize ligature hazards in your building.
Anti-ligature furniture has several features that enhance safety in your building. Anti-ligature furnishings are designed to be impenetrable and durable. They also remove any moving parts.
Staff members can have peace of mind by knowing that residents are safe and comfortable with anti-ligature furniture.
Installing anti-ligature furnishings in behavioral health facilities will make the facility safer for patients as well as staff. Regularly assess the surrounding environment in order to determine if all parts of the facility have been equipped with the necessary equipment to minimize ligature hazards.
Max-Secure, a leader in the industry of anti-ligature furnishings for behavioral health care facilities, has provided these institutions with this furniture since over 40 years. The furniture we manufacture is designed to be maintenance-free and last for many years.