Rules are one thing - but all too often they're used as a crutch to get around having to come up with meaningful and workable solutions to problems with caring for people. The rules often overlook the fact that people are "people" - not just items to be catalogued and inventoried.
Here's the story, which I found on Boing Boing.
A nursing home in Germany built an exact replica of a bus stop in front of the facility. The only difference is that buses never stop there.“It sounds funny,” said Old Lions Chairman Franz-Josef Goebel, “but it helps. Our members are 84 years-old on average. Their short-term memory hardly works at all, but the long-term memory is still active. They know the green and yellow bus sign and remember that waiting there means they will go home.” The result is that errant patients now wait for their trip home at the bus stop, before quickly forgetting why they were there in the first place.Link
“We will approach them and say that the bus is coming later today and invite them in to the home for a coffee,” said Mr Neureither. “Five minutes later they have completely forgotten they wanted to leave.”