It's a staple of Hollywood hospital scenes: An ornery nurse tells distraught family members that they must leave the bedside of their loved one.

A new study suggests that such interactions should be kept to a minimum, for the benefit of both patients and their families.

"Elimination of even minimal restrictions on visitation hours improved family satisfaction and improved nurses' perceptions of family satisfaction with the visitation policy," wrote researchers in a report published Monday in the American Journal of Critical Care.

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