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Hospital Wards

Volume 497: debated on Wednesday 14 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what data NHS trusts are required to collect to monitor levels of (a) use of mixed-sex accommodation and (b) standards of privacy and dignity provided for patients. (291785)

Annually, the national adult in-patient survey conducted by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) is used to measure patient experience relating to mixed sex accommodation and privacy and dignity. Nationally, there is no requirement to monitor occurrences of mixed sex accommodation.

The 2009-10 NHS Standard Contract for Acute Hospital Services states:

“The Provider shall have a Mixed Sex Accommodation Reduction Plan, and shall comply with its obligations under that plan.”

The definition of such a plan is:

“The plan agreed in accordance with the Law and Guidance between the provider and the co-ordinating commissioner which sets out obligations, timescales and performance monitoring mechanisms to deliver substantial reductions in the number of patients sharing with members of the opposite sex sleeping or sanitary accommodation owned or controlled by the provider or a sub-contractor.”

Because the Department is committed to keep patient experience at the heart of delivery, ahead of the next (2009) CQC annual in-patient survey outcome, it is currently exploring with strategic health authorities, arrangements that would provide indications of progress by the local national health service in delivering same-sex accommodation.