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Same sex accommodation

Declaration of compliance

Mixed sex accommodation has been eliminated in all our hospitals.

Every patient has the right to receive high quality care that is safe, effective and respects their privacy and dignity. We are committed to providing every patient with same sex accommodation, because it helps to safeguard their privacy and dignity when they are often at their most vulnerable.

Mixed sex accommodation has been eliminated in our trust. Patients who are admitted to any of our hospitals will only share the room where they sleep with members of the same sex and, in those few remaining areas where the trust does not have single bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms, same sex toilets and bathrooms will be close to their bed area. 97% of our beds are in single rooms and 79% of these have en-suite facilities. Sharing facilities with members of the opposite sex will only happen by exception based on clinical need (e.g. on some wards specialist facilities such as assisted bathrooms are used as required by patients of either sex).

What does this mean for patients?

Other than in the circumstances set out above, patients admitted to Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust can expect to find the following:

Same sex-accommodation means (standard National definition):

·         The room where your bed is will only have patients of the same sex as you

·         Your toilet and bathroom will be just for your gender, and will be close to your bed area

It is possible that there will be both men and women patients on the ward, but they will not share your sleeping area. You may have to cross a ward corridor to reach your bathroom, but you will not have to walk through opposite-sex areas.

You may share some communal space, such as day rooms or dining rooms, and it is very likely that you will see both men and women patients as you move around the hospital (eg on your way to X-ray or the operating theatre).

It is probable that visitors of the opposite gender will come into the room where your bed is, and this may include patients visiting each other.

It is almost certain that both male and female nurses, doctors and other staff will come into your bed area.

If you need help to use the toilet or take a bath (eg you need a hoist or special bath) then you may be taken to a “unisex” bathroom used by both men and women, but a member of staff will be with you, and other patients will not be in the bathroom at the same time.

The NHS will not turn patients away just because a “right-sex” bed is not immediately available

What are our plans for the future?

The Trust’s estate fully delivers the requirements of same-sex accommodation and any future development, including both new build and refurbishment works, would maintain or improve standards in this area. Our policies on Bed Management, Privacy and Dignity, and our Women’s Strategy all support the principles of same-sex accommodation. These are reviewed regularly and would be further enhanced should areas for improvement be identified.

How will we measure success?

We will include questions on patient experience of same-sex accommodation within appropriate patient experience surveys and will monitor feedback received directly to identify any areas of weakness. The results of this monitoring will be reported to the Clinical Governance Committee.

What do I do if I think I am in mixed sex accommodation?

We want to know about your experiences. If you have any comments or concerns please contact the Trust’s Advice, Complaints and Feedback team on 0203 317 7102 or email feedback@candi.nhs.uk or write to:

Advice and Complaints Service
Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust
Freepost 1st Class (LON 12613)
London NW1 0YT.

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