Sexual safety on mental health wards

Care Quality Commission, September 2018

Care Quality Commission report based on an analysis of nearly 60,000 reports that found 1,120 sexual incidents involving patients, staff, visitors and others described in 919 reports – some of which included multiple incidents. More than a third of the incidents (457) could be categorised as sexual assault or sexual harassment of patients or staff.  Providers and people who use services told the CQC:

  1. People who use services do not always feel that they are kept safe from unwanted sexual behaviour
  2. Clinical leaders of mental health services do not always know what is good practice in promoting the sexual safety of people using the service and of their staff
  3. Many staff do not have the skills to promote sexual safety or to respond appropriately to incidents
  4. The ward environment does not always promote the sexual safety of people using the service
  5. Staff may under-report incidents and reports may not reflect the true impact on the person who is affected
  6. Joint-working with other agencies such as the police does not always work well in practice

Click here to view the full report.

Transforming care: the challenges and solutions

Voluntary Organisations Disability Group, May 2018

Voluntary Organisations Disability Group report outlining challenges and solutions to moving people with learning disabilities, autism and/or mental health conditions out of long-stay inpatient care. This follows the implementation of a pilot project, the report offers recommendations for future steps.  The challenges involving commissioners, funders and care providers include:

  • delays in hospital discharge plans, including a lack of knowledge in local authorities about potential community support options
  • negative attitudes and aspirations towards people supported (for example, referring to people by patient identity number instead of by their name)
  • confusion about costs, with commissioners and funders underestimating the cost of initial support immediately after discharge and/or therapeutic support
  • a lack of support to families, despite the fact that responsive ongoing support to families is critical to the sustainability of support to their loved one.

Click here to view this report.

Out of area placements in mental health services for adults in acute inpatient care

Department of Health, October 2016

The government has set a national ambition to eliminate inappropriate out of area placements (OAPs) in mental health services for adults in acute inpatient care by 2020 to 2021.

This definition of OAPs has been developed following significant stakeholder engagement to enable progress against the ambition to be monitored. It is aimed at providers, commissioners and users of local adult inpatient acute mental health services in England.

It is intended to support providers and commissioners in accurately monitoring and reducing their use of OAPs and to help providers submit accurate information on OAPs to national data collections. It will also be of interest to individuals using mental health services and who may be placed out of area for their care.

Click here to access the guidance.