Effects of Training Staff in MBPBS on the Use of Physical Restraints, Staff Stress and Turnover, Staff and Peer Injuries, and Cost Effectiveness in Developmental Disabilities

Document Type


Publication Date



Some individuals with developmental disabilities who reside in community group homes occasionally engage in low-frequency, but high-intensity, aggressive behavior. Over time, staff members assigned to manage the aggressive behaviors of these individuals are repeatedly injured, have to take time off work, become highly stressed, and eventually find alternative employment. In this study, we provided a 7-day intensive Mindfulness-Based Positive Behavior Support (MBPBS) training to staff from three group homes and measured the effects of such training on their use of verbal redirection and physical restraint, staff stress levels and turnover, staff and peer injuries, and benefit-cost analyses. When compared to baseline measures, results showed clinically and statistically significant reductions in the use of verbal redirection, complete disuse of physical restraints within a few weeks of MBPBS training, and cessation of staff and peer injuries. In addition, there was a significant reduction in staff stress and zero staff turnover. Finally, benefit-cost analysis showed substantial financial savings due to staff participation in the MBPBS program. This study adds to the extant research suggestive of mindfulness-based interventions being effective in reducing the use of restraints, decreasing staff stress, and providing financial savings to the service providers of individuals with developmental disabilities.