To talk to someone about this information contact your care team.
You can refer to this information throughout your stay on the ward. We hope you find it useful.
We have split this into categories so you can easily find the topics that are important to you.
This is not meant to replace conversations with our staff who are always willing to answer your questions or talk to you about your concerns.
We provide inpatient care, support and treatment for men and women with a range of different needs.
People come into hospital for a variety of reasons. The most common are:
- to undergo an assessment of their mental health
- to review their treatment.
People have different feelings about being in hospital. Some feel relief and are pleased to be there. Others may feel afraid, confused, angry, vulnerable or isolated. Our ward staff understand this and are here to help.
If you have any concerns or anxiety about your stay with us, please tell us. We are here to support you and help you on your recovery journey.
How long can I expect to stay?
How long you can expect to stay will depend on your needs. This can range from one to several weeks. In rare cases this may be longer.
What to bring with you
- any prescription medicines or tablets you would normally take
- Clothing (including nightwear) and toiletries
- hair brush, slippers, dressing gown
- spectacles, hearing aids, dentures
- walking aids (if required) for example frame, stick, crutches.
Do NOT bring:
- large amounts of money
- non-prescription medications.
If possible please mark all personal belongings with a coloured marker pen before admission. Labelling your belongings helps to make sure things aren’t misplaced or taken in error.
Only a limited amount of laundry can be done on site. Where possible we ask families and carers to take responsibility for bringing you clean clothing. If there are difficulties with this, please let us know.
Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage to items not handed in for safekeeping, nor for clothing laundered on site.
Meals and snacks
There is a slight variation in meal times across our wards but you can expect these to occur between the times indicated below. Each ward will have their own information which will give the specific times for where you are staying.
- Cereals, toast and drinks are available flexibly throughout the morning.
- A cooked breakfast is available between 8.45am and 9.30am.
- Lunch is available between 12 noon and 1.30pm.
- Evening meals are served between 4.30pm and 6pm.
- Drinks and snacks are offered in the morning and afternoon or on request throughout the day.
If you have any special requirements or can’t find anything on the menu that suits you, please tell a member of staff.
If family wish to attend the ward to support meal times, this can be discussed and arranged with ward staff.
A daily paper is delivered to the wards. Please feel free to read it.
To promote the health and wellbeing of all, our hospitals are smoke free. Visitors are not permitted to smoke on site and are respectfully asked not to dispose of cigarette ends anywhere on site or at the entrance.
Smoking cessation advice is available on request.
Usual visiting times will be between 10am and 10pm. If visitors are unable to attend during these times, alternative options can be arranged with ward staff.
The ward is not a suitable environment for young children. If you feel it is important for a young person to visit, please talk to a member of the team. We will advise you of the options according to Trust policy.
What you can expect:
- you will be treated with respect and dignity at all times
- you will be given a clear explanation of your condition and the treatment options available
- your records will be kept confidential
- you will be informed about different treatments and procedure(s) being carried out
- your relatives and carers will be informed of your progress (if you agree)
- you will be asked for your consent to treatment or procedure(s).
In return, we ask you to:
- provide us with the necessary information about your condition, symptoms and medication in order to provide proper care
- treat staff with the same respect you expect from them.
Equality and diversity
We want to make sure that everyone has a positive experience on our wards. We recognise and strive to address the varying needs and wishes of different social groups. We aim to maximise the inclusion and participation of patients and carers, and their ability to exercise choice. If we can assist you in any way please let us know.
What is an assessment?
An assessment is not a test. It helps staff to find out about:
- you as a person
- your health and any problems
- how you are coping.
The time it takes varies from person to person and can involve:
- talking with you, alone or in small groups
- talking with people who are close to you
- observation over a period of time
- some physical investigations (for example, blood tests, x-rays etc).
Assessments also help doctors to diagnose and treat illnesses. Sometime it is not possible to reach a diagnosis but treatments and care can be identified to help you manage your symptoms.
Throughout the assessment, staff work with you to identify your needs. Together you will plan your care, this may include group work, therapies and medication.
You and your relatives (if you wish) will receive a copy of this plan known as an ‘intervention plan’.
We ask you and your visitors to help us make sure these agreed interventions can be carried out when planned (please see the notes on visiting times in this booklet).
Activities and group work
Your treatment may include taking part in leisure, therapeutic and social activities. Sometimes it takes a lot of effort to do this. We will do our best to support you as the results can be very positive.
Benefits may include:
- more self confidence
- improved concentration
- new or improved skills
- increased independence
- increased ability to cope with difficulties
- meeting other people.
We welcome your opinions and suggestions on activities so that these can be planned to suit your needs.
Who will be involved in my assessment and care?
- a relative / carer
- your named nurse
- your care co-ordinator
- occupational therapist
- other professionals as required.
Your care and treatment
Your named nurse and/or care co-ordinator will carry out the agreed intervention plans with you. They will help address any problems that arise as a result of this and will keep other members of the team informed. If your named nurse is not available, another nurse will take over this role.
Your views and feelings are very important. Please do not hesitate to tell staff if you have suggestions or concerns.
Your care and treatment will be reviewed regularly. You will be invited to attend a meeting with staff involved in your care to discuss your progress and whether your care plan is working. Your relatives or carer can attend this meeting if you want them to.
If you cannot or do not want to attend a review meeting someone can go on your behalf. This can be a relative, partner, close friend, your named nurse or someone else of your choosing.
The information discussed is confidential.
If you prefer to see your consultant or any other staff in private, please see your named nurse who will arrange this.
How can my views be heard?
Often patients find it difficult to express themselves during meetings with doctors and professionals. It is common to forget to mention important things or ask questions that have been bothering you. Sometimes people feel nervous, don’t want to appear silly or just feel too ill to cope with meetings and decision making.
Here are a few suggestions that might help you:
- Ward staff are there to support you, so please talk to them; together you can plan what you want to know, say or ask during the meetings.
- Keep a notebook and pencil handy and jot down the main things you want to discuss or ask.
- Place a comment in the suggestion box at the entrance to the ward.
- Ask the person to explain what they mean or repeat what they have said if there is anything you do not understand.
- A relative, carer or someone else can attend meetings and speak on your behalf.
- Discuss an advanced directive with your named nurse/care co-ordinator.
Notice boards, leaflet racks and information
Notice boards and leaflets are available on the ward with information you, your relatives and carers may find helpful. Please feel free to read these and take them away with you. If the information you need is not available, please ask staff who help you to get a copy of this.
We take spirituality seriously and every effort is made to accommodate your needs. Please ask about the availability of a chaplain, local priest or minister of your faith group.
If you need any assistance do not hesitate to speak to any member of staff.
There will be a weekly fire alarm test. If the fire alarms sound at any other time, staff will direct you to a safe area within the hospital or grounds.
To promote the safety of all patients, visitors and staff there is controlled exit and entry to our wards. This can be overridden in an emergency situation.
Visits home and discharge
A review meeting with you and your family is held to plan your discharge and after care. You may have visits home before discharge. This may include a home assessment with an occupational therapist.
Patients and their family are normally responsible for transport arrangements. If this is a problem please tell your named nurse.
Upon discharge you will be given a supply of medication. For further supplies you should make an appointment with your GP.
This may include one or more of the following:
- outpatient appointment
- visits from a member of the community mental health team
- day attendance on the ward periodically
- support from adult and community services
- support at home.
Normally you will be contacted by the professional responsible for your ongoing support/treatment within 72 hours following discharge.
What can I do if I disagree with aspects of my care or treatment or if there are problems with staff?
Please talk to staff on the ward about your concerns. We welcome all comments and will do everything possible to put things right if there is an issue. This will NOT negatively impact your care or treatment.
If you feel unable to talk to the ward staff, you can…
- Contact the patient advice and liaison service (tel. 0800 052 0219)
- Ask someone to speak or act on your behalf – You may ask a relative, friend, or someone else you know to speak for you. Alternatively you may wish to contact an advocacy service.
Sometimes people find it helpful to have someone who is not personally involved with them or their care to speak on their behalf, particularly if they have a problem with a service.
Your named nurse or care co-ordinator can help you to contact local advocacy services for support.
Useful contact numbers
Patient advice and liaison service (PALS): 0800 052 0219
Alzheimer’s Society: 01723 500958
Age Concern: 01723 379508
Adult and community services: 0845 0349410
L961, V3, 14/ 04/2020 (Archive: 14/04/ 2023)