Patient safety and safeguarding
Patient safety is very important to us. Occasionally when people receive care and treatment from us things go wrong, or an unexpected event occurs. These are known as patient safety incidents.
A patient safety incident is any unintended or unexpected incident which could have, or did, lead to harm for one or more patient’s receiving healthcare. These can range from incidents which cause no harm, to rarer incidents which can have a devastating impact on someone’s life. They also include ‘near misses’ where an issue was spotted prior to an incident occurring.
It's important that we learn lessons from patient safety incidents, so that we can try and prevent them from recurring.
The Patient Safety Incident Response Framework (PSIRF), is the new approach to responding to patient safety incidents that occur within the NHS and replaces the previous Serious Incidents (SI) Framework (2015). PSIRF is underpinned by modern patient safety science and updates the way that patient safety incidents are responded to and how patient safety investigations are undertaken. This video explains PSIRF and how it differs from the SI Framework:
Reviews and patient safety incident investigations completed under the PSIRF are undertaken to identify underlying system causes and the actions that need to be taken to prevent the issues from recurring. They do not seek to apportion fault or blame.
It's important that we have the appropriate number of staff on duty with the right skill mix to provide quality care that is safe and compassionate.
The complex mental health needs of patients often vary and sometimes, when people are very unwell, we may need more staff to support them. Our senior nurses carry out regular assessments to ensure our wards are staffed safely, and we have a process for staff to escalate any concerns regarding staffing levels to support decision making.
We also have posters in each ward to show planned and actual staffing levels for each shift, as well as the name of the nurse in charge and matron.
We publish information about our staffing levels on our inpatient units. This is part of a national requirement for us to be open and transparent about our services.
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Our patients have the right to receive high quality care that is safe, effective and respects their privacy and dignity. We do everything we can to make sure patients have the best possible experience in our care and we know that providing same sex accommodation will help safeguard people's privacy and dignity.
For us to say we provide same sex accommodation we must offer sleeping areas and toilet and washing areas that are for men and women only, and these must be clearly labelled. Same sex accommodation can be provided in:
- Same sex wards which are all male or all female
- Single rooms with access to gender specific toilet and washing facilities
- Mixed wards where men and women are in separate bays or rooms but have access to gender specific toilet and washing facilities.
People tell us that being in same sex accommodation makes a big difference to how comfortable and relaxed they feel. Sharing accommodation with people of the opposite sex can compromise their privacy and dignity at a time when they are already feeling vulnerable. Some patients find it embarrassing to share mixed sex accommodation and there may also be religious or cultural reasons for not wishing to do so.
We're working hard to upgrade facilities at our inpatient units and have taken a number of steps to ensure that the safety and dignity of patients is preserved. We've already designated a number of wards as single sex.
Our staff receive training about same sex accommodation and the importance of preserving the privacy and dignity of patients.
Our Delivery Plan sets out what we need to do, how we’re going to do it and when.
Safeguarding means protecting someone’s right to live in safety, free from abuse and neglect. This is everyone’s right and it's important to look out for other people to make sure this right is being protected.
A child or adult at risk of abuse or neglect is someone who is unable to protect themselves from either the risk of, or the experience of, abuse or neglect.
What to do if you are concerned about an adult or child
Child or adult abuse or neglect is not acceptable. If you or someone you know is at risk of being abused or neglected, or experiencing abuse or neglect, please tell someone. Don’t ignore it. Don’t assume that someone else is doing something about the situation. Tell us about it so that we can help.
If you or someone you're concerned about is using our services you can speak to a member of staff about the best way to ensure they're safe or you can make direct contact with the local authority in your area. Local authorities have a statutory responsibility for safeguarding children and adults and will respond to your concern.
Each local authority area has a Safeguarding Board for adults and one for children, who are responsible for ensuring that safeguarding is effective in each area.
Information about the Safeguarding Boards in your area and how to raise a concern are available in the accordions below: