Around 850 patients who were inpatients in July this year will receive a questionnaire, where they will be asked a range of questions around the quality of care they received and their experience while in hospital. This includes a number of questions on whether patients felt that they shared toilet, bathroom facilities or a sleeping area such as a room or bay with someone of the opposite sex.
Tracey Nutter, Director of Nursing said: "It's important that when answering the questions, patients are aware that a sleeping area could be a room or bay with dedicated same sex washing and toilet provision, and that this room or bay could be within a larger ward area. It's not uncommon to have a separate male bay and female bay next to each other within a larger ward area. This falls within the new guidelines because the sleeping and bathing arrangements are now all segregated."
Although the vast majority of patients were cared for in a single sex environment, the Trust built more toilets and bathrooms, created additional bays and side rooms with existing ward areas and changed operational policies to help improve privacy and dignity issues further. Now patients should not share a sleeping area, washroom or toilet facility with a member of the opposite sex, unless there are appropriate clinical reasons for doing so. These include situations where the need to admit someone in an emergency over-rides the need for segregation or where patients are treated in highly specialised areas such as intensive care and coronary care.
Miss Nutter said:" It's important that our patients can comment on the care they receive in hospital so that we continue to use their experiences to improve services for them. The inpatient survey is the first opportunity patients will have to comment on the changes that we have made to facilities to improve privacy and dignity issues and we hope that people will take the time to respond." Ends
For further information please contact:
Patrick Butler, Public Relations Manager, Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust. Tel: 01722 425170