Same-sex accommodation


Each year the Trust is required to state its commitment to delivering same sex accommodation to our patients and to display this on the Trust website.  Our commitment to this remains, and below is the declaration and information as stated on the Trust website.

The NHS is committed to making sure that all patients receive high-quality care that is safe, effective and focused on their needs.  The NHS Constitution states that all patients have the right to privacy and to be treated with dignity and respect.  We believe that providing same-sex accommodation is an effective way of achieving this goal and giving all patients the best possible experience while they are in hospital.

Why is same-sex accommodation so important?

It is clear from what patients tell us that being in mixed-sex accommodation can compromise their privacy and dignity at a time when they may already be feeling vulnerable.  The most common concerns include physical exposure, being in an embarrassing or threatening situation, noise, and th possibility of other patients overhearing conversations about their conditions.

Many patients are strongly opposed to mixed sex accommodation for cultural or religious reasons.

What do we mean by mixed-sex and same-sex accommodation?

Mixed-sex accommodation is where men and women have to share sleeping areas or toilet and washing facilities.  Same-sex accommodation is where specific sleeping areas and toilet and washing facilities are designated as either men-only or women-only.

Same-sex accommodation can be provided in:

  • Same-sex wards, where the whole ward is occupied by men or women only
  • Single rooms
  • Mixed wards, where men and women are in separate bays or rooms

Toilet and washing facilities should be easily accessible and, ideally, either inside or next to the ward, bay or room.  Patients should not need to go through sleeping areas or toilet or washing facilities used by the opposite sex to access their own.

Self-Declaration Statement Regarding Same Sex Accommodation

Delivering Same Sex Accommodation – Declaration of Compliance 2018 / 2019

Medway NHS Foundation Trust (MFT) is pleased to confirm that we continue to respect our patients privacy and dignity and that we are working towards eliminating mixed sex accommodation, except when it is in the patient’s overall best interest, or reflects their personal choice.

We have the necessary facilities, resources and culture to ensure that patients who are admitted to our hospital will only share the room where they sleep with members of the same sex, and same sex toilets and bathrooms will be close to their bed area.  Sharing with members of the opposite sex will only happen where clinically necessary (for example where patients need specialist equipment such as in Coronary Care or Intensive Care), or when patients actively choose to share.

If our care should fall short of the required standard, we will report it.  We will also set up an audit mechanism to make sure that we do not misclassify any of our reports.  We will publish the results of that audit on the Trust website. The Trust has plans in place and is actively working to eliminate all mixed sex accommodation.