"Seacole Ward: patient opinions of the new mobile phone procedure"

About: Forensic mental health / Low secure services

(as a staff member posting for a patient/service user),

We have been piloting a new procedure on the use of mobile phones at The Wells Road Centre for 3 months to evaluate it's success. In secure hospitals we have to manage patient access to technology which can use the internet and other issues which can arise. Patients have been able to use mobile phones either on community leave or under time limited supervision in the hospital.

We have decided to give the patients the option of recieving a basic mobile phone which they can use within the hospital throughout the day. We have asked patients from each ward for their opinions on this new procedure to help us review it's success. The questions and responses for Seacole ward are as follows:

1. How has the option of having a mobile phone available on the ward benefitted you?

• "Very good"

• "Alright, yes"

• "I can talk to my kids when I want to"

• ‘I have a friend who is quite unwell, paranoid, sometimes when you call off a landline phone she doesn’t answer or even realise you’ve called. Because I can now text her she can read these texts when she is more well and know I’ve tried to get in touch and she can ring me back or text back and its better. More efficient. ’

• ‘It’s a piece of s**t phone but it’ll do for a quick text’

2. Do you have any suggestions on how we could improve our policy on mobile phones?

• ‘People shouldn’t take mobiles off the ward. I see the boys have theirs all the time, in coffee bar, or walking round the courtyard, it’s wrong and it shouldn’t happen’.

• ‘I think taking it on leave is good, then if you struggle, you can ring the ward’

• ‘We should be allowed the phones all the time’

• ‘No we should be allowed them longer but not that long, not 24/7, maybe up to about 10ish’

• ‘I want my smart phone’

3. Any other comments?

• ‘When a patient doesn’t have access to their room like I haven’t not had I don’t get to use my phone, can we have something in place for people who don’t get to use their phone. But then I don’t know if that’s more ward policy than mobile phone policy’.

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Responses

Response from Gregg Murray, Deputy Modern Matron, The Wells Road Centre, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust We are preparing to make a change

Thank you to those of you on Seacole ward who have given your opinion on our Mobile phone procedure. This will help us to think about whether we need to make any changes to make the procedure more user friendly whilst maintaining the security aspects that we need.

We will compare responses from each ward and will display these for you as well so that you can see what patients accross the hospital are saying about this issue.

Let me know if you would like to respond to this posting - if you feel your view is not represented by the above comments.

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Response from Gregg Murray, Deputy Modern Matron, The Wells Road Centre, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust We have made a change

We have come to the end of our three month pilot to see how the mobile phone procedure has been working. There have been very few issues of concern regarding use of the phones. I am pleased to see that access to mobile phones has improved your ability to speak with friends and family and to organise aspects of daily life.

As a result of your comments we have agreed to increase access to ten O'clock in the evening as many of you felt that eight O'clock was too limited. We have also agreed that the coffee bar and central courtyard will be designated areas for basic hospital mobile phone use during Central Area access times. Our Procedure has now been altered to reflect these changes.

The use of personal 'smart' phones will continue to be available but will require staff supervision to maintain the security needs of the hospital.

Thank you for your involvement in reviewing this important procedure.

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