Mental health services for older people, County Durham and Darlington
Oak Ward (functional assessment)
West Park Hospital
Edward Pease Way
Darlington, DL2 2TS
Tel number: 01325 552098
About the service
Oak Ward is an inpatient facility which provides assessment and care for older people based in West Park Hospital, Darlington.
The main client group is older people who suffer from a wide range of mental health problems.
It is a mixed sex ward but areas of the ward are delegated to uphold privacy and dignity. There are also side rooms for patients to use as well as a communal lounge.
While the aim of the trust is to keep people out of hospital and provide treatment in their own homes, unfortunately sometimes people require a hospital stay to receive the best recommended treatment.
The aim of the ward is to provide person centred care, with intervention plans which are focused around the patient's needs and abilities, provided at their own pace and delivered with sensitivity and understanding. Dignity and respect is a priority.
Treatments and therapies available
Therapies available on the ward include psychological formulation and talking therapies including:
- Mindfulness and recovery groups
- Dietetic advice
- Occupational therapy
- Named nurse and associated nurse.
The ward also offers the opportunity for outside groups to meet with patients, such as the Alzheimer’s society and independent sector.
The ward team
The Oak Ward team includes:
- Nursing staff
- Responsible clinician
- Staff grade doctors
- Occupational therapists
- Community team members
- Social workers
- Students on placement
- House keepers.
How to access the service
Referrals to the ward can be made through a GP or social services or in times of emergency, the crisis team can access the ward. If people are already involved with the service then the community team can refer for beds.
On admission to the ward a named nurse will be allocated to each patient to manage their care during their time on the ward. They will spend time with the patient on a regular basis and family members will be contacted by the named nurse to maintain contact and to give updates on progress.
About the ward
Oak Ward has 12 beds. All are single rooms with en-suite facilities.
The ward has separate male and female lounges, both with access to TVs.
The physiotherapist has a gym in which to provide services.
There is a specialised kitchen which allows for baking groups, as well as kitchen assessments by the occupational therapist team.
There is a large garden with seats, walk way and a central gazebo.
Activities on the ward
There is also an activity room on the ward which provides resources for solo activities as well as group work. Activities are very much based on a personal preference.
The ward has a small library of donated books, renaissance, puzzles and art.
Quizzes and baking groups encourage patients to work together but staff also engage with patients on an individual level and these activities are based on the individuals’ preferences and need.
Other therapeutic activities are available, such as a relaxation group, mindfulness and recovery groups.
Meal times are:
- Breakfast - 8.00am to 9.00am
- Lunch - 12 noon to 1.30pm
- Tea - 4.45pm to 6.00pm.
Meal times are protected and families are asked not to visit during these times.
Visiting times on Oak Ward are:
- 2.00pm to 4.30pm
- 6.00pm to 8.00pm.
If family or friends find it difficult to meet these times the ward staff are happy to make other arrangements to meet their needs.