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Privacy and dignity

Respecting the privacy and dignity of our patients is a critical part of the overall patient experience at our hospitals. In line with Department of Health guidance we are committed to reducing mixed sex accommodation by providing more single-sex accommodation.

Every patient has the right to receive high quality care that is safe, effective and respects their privacy and dignity. We have virtually eliminated mixed sex accommodation. Patients who are admitted to any of our hospitals 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 in exceptional circumstances.  

What does this mean for patients?

Same sex-accommodation means:
  • The room where your bed is will only have patients of the same sex as you
  • Your toilet and bathroom will be just for your gender, and will be close to your bed area
It is possible that there will be women patients and men visitors on the ward, but they will not share your sleeping area. You may have to cross a ward corridor to reach your bathroom, but you will not have to walk through opposite-sex areas.

It is likely that you will see both men and women patients as you move around the hospital (eg on your way to X-ray or the operating theatre).
It is probable that visitors of the opposite gender will come into the room where your bed is, and this may include patients visiting each other.

It is almost certain that both male and female nurses, doctors and other staff will come into your bed area.

All washrooms and toilet facilities are designated to gender specific and are clearly signposted to indicate this.

The NHS will not turn patients away just because a 'right-sex' bed is not immediately available.

Our plans for the future

We will continue to monitor compliance with single sex accommodation. Staff will remain proactive in monitoring this.

How we measure success

We will monitor this through the Care Qulaity Commission's annual inpatient survey, reporting to those bodies who 'buy' our services, local surveys, patient engagement and reports to our Board.

What to do if you think you are in mixed sex accommodation

We want to know about your experiences. Please contact Sue Redfern, deputy director of nursing, on 0151 706 5480 or by email sue.redfern@rlbuht.nhs.uk  if you have any comments or concerns.

You can find out more about privacy, dignity and same-sex accommodation on the Department of Health website.​

You can download the full declaration of compliance report here​.