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1. What is Positive Behaviour Support (PBS)?

Positive Behaviour Support is a framework for understanding and working with behaviour (bearing in mind that everything we do is behaviour!). It is recommended throughout current guidance. PBS is based on developing a sound understanding of the reasons behind behaviour, and developing proactive strategies to increase people’s quality of life. It does this through focusing on active support, effective communication, skills-teaching, reinforcing positive behaviour and reducing triggers.

2. Is PBS a new idea?

No. It has its origins in Applied Behaviour Analysis, with the values of Person-Centred Planning, and has been around as a theoretical concept since the 1970s. Its application in practice is relatively new.

3. Why is PBS used in learning disability services?

PBS was developed in learning disability services, although it is also used more widely. This is mainly because it has arisen out of research conducted in the learning disability field. It is applicable with any people, regardless of disability.

4. Does using PBS mean Bethphage never uses physical restraints?

No – although Bethphage strive to minimise the use of restraints, and continue to focus on restraint reduction. PBS should help us to reduce the use of restraint by focusing on proactive methods. Reactive plans are still part of PBS so that support workers know how to keep everyone safe if there is a crisis. Physical restraint is just one strategy, and is used as little as possible.

5. Is PBS the only method used in learning disability services?

PBS is the main current framework for understanding and working with behaviour, and is accepted and recommended through policy and guidance at national level. There are a number of different psychological and medical approaches, and a number of different models of physical intervention. PBS can (and does) work alongside these other options.

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