Title 23
Health and Safety

Chapter 17.5
Rights of Nursing Home Patients

R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-17.5-9

§ 23-17.5-9. Abuse.

(a) Patients shall not be subject to mental and physical abuse, and shall be free from chemical and (except in emergencies) physical restraints except as authorized in writing by a physician for a specified and limited period of time for the protection of the patient.

(b) Restraining devices are generally prohibited. A controlling device to be used for the protection of the patient may be utilized only as prescribed in writing and signed by a physician. The length of time, the purpose, and the kind of restraint shall be specified in the physician’s order.

(c) A training program in the use of restraints shall be required for all personnel providing direct patient care, and completion of the program shall be documented in the employee’s personnel record.

(d) If physical restraining devices are authorized by a physician in accordance with subsection (b), the patient’s next of kin or legal guardian shall be informed in writing of the purpose and duration of restraint. A copy of the communication shall be retained in the medical record for one year.

History of Section.
P.L. 1978, ch. 235, § 1.