We are proud that the vast majority of patients who are admitted to any of our hospitals will be cared for in a ward where they will have their own bedroom, many with en suite washing and toilet facilities.  In the small number of wards where there is more than one bed in a bedroom, patients will only share the room where they sleep with members of the same sex, and same sex toilets and bathrooms will be close to their bed area and clearly signed.  This means that any mixed sex accommodation is virtually eliminated.

What have we been doing to make things better?

We received just over £170,000 from the Department of Health to further improve more of our accommodation.  We have been reviewing all of our accommodation and upgrading facilities where necessary, so that we can make sure that everywhere has same sex sleeping accommodation, toilets and bathroom facilities.

The money has been used to carry out any remedial work needed following the review and to deliver training to our clinical staff to make sure that the care they deliver meets the privacy and dignity needs of each patient.

The trust has developed a privacy and dignity policy which sets out the expectations of the trust in maintaining privacy and dignity and provides a framework on which staff, service users their relatives and carers can determine our performance.

In the highly unlikely event that someone is placed in a bed bay where there is a member of the opposite sex this will be treated as a serious untoward incident and this is reflected in the trust policies and guidelines.  Leaflets for staff, service users and their families have been produced about same sex accommodation, what this means and what they can expect.   Ongoing plans are in place to ensure the developments are embedded in the trust and monitored regularly.

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What are our plans for the future?

It has been established that by June 2010, 97% of inpatients within the trust would be accommodated in single rooms with 73% of those rooms providing en suite facilities.  

A further development project at Cross Lane Hospital in Scarborough is now underway to modernise the site.  Cross Lane Hospital has long been the hub for mental health services in the local area, providing adult and older people’s services to the community in Scarborough, Whitby and Ryedale. The trust plans to build a specialist care assessment and treatment unit for older people to replace the outdated buildings on site. This new, modern and spacious accommodation will allow staff to provide more individualised care for older people with different needs such as Alzheimers disease or depression.

The purpose built unit will provide assessment and treatment beds for older people’s services along with spaces for ‘partial hospitalisation’. All rooms will be single rooms and have en suite facilities. The existing adult inpatient services on the same site will also be undergoing a major refurbishment to further improve the ward environment and facilities. The completion of the Cross Lane development will mean 98% of the inpatient facilities in the trust will be single rooms with 80% of accommodation being single en suite rooms.

Many of the wards within the trust are now same sex wards which will only care for men or women.  In services for older people there will continue to be wards which care for both men and women but bedrooms will be always be same sex and good physical separation of male and female bedroom areas will be planned.

To complement the building programmes the trust will provide a private and dignified care experience, within an environment that can deliver same sex accommodation. Training programmes to promote privacy and dignity in care have been delivered across all clinical services to ensure staff are aware of the need to provide same sex accommodation ensuring the care they give is centred around the individuals needs maintaining their privacy and dignity at all times.  A privacy and dignity e-learning package is being developed to support this training and ensure this is undertaken by as many staff as possible.