"New entry system to mental health services hub"

About: Devon Partnership NHS Trust / Adult mental health

(as the patient),

Sherbourne House, Courtnay street, Newton Abbot. Is the Mental health NHS hub for the Teignbridge area. accommodating Psychiatry, Psychology, therapy, depression and anxiety services amongst others.

They have recently installed a video phone entry system in the lobby.

the entry phone has several issues.

1. it has been installed at "average adult" height. disadvantaginging anyone in a wheel chair or below average height

2. it requires following a series of written instruction. not in easy read. disadvantaging anyone with reading difficulties or who have problems recalling a series of 4 or more instructions

also disadvantaging anyone with visual problems

also causing anxiety

3. the video is one way. this disadvantages any one who is non verbal (assuming the receptionist signs makaton/bsl anyway) also causing problems with anyone struggling with paranoia

4. the video phone requires verbal interaction, disadvantaging anyone with hearing problems

5. there is a written sign saying that there will no longer be stairwell access to the 2nd floor (where the patient services are) meaning everyone has to use a very small restrictive lift. causing problems with anxiety, personal space, and claustrophobia

6. The buttons on the phone require reasonable fine motor control, disadvantaging anyone with tremors, cerebral palsy or muscular problems.

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Responses

Response from Devon Partnership NHS Trust

Very sorry! We feel the same! The system was installed by our landlord against our wishes. We are continuing to protest and I will directly raise your very helpful points with the landlord. I agree that it makes life difficult for people with sensory or physical difficulties. I am also raising these concerns with our Trust Equality and Diversity lead.

If you have any difficulties personally then please raise this with your therapist/worker and they will discuss how we can help.

Neill Richardson, Clinical Team Leader, Depression & Anxiety Service - South & West Devon

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Response from Neill Richardson, Clinical Team Lead, South and West Devon DAS, Devon Partnership NHS Trust We are preparing to make a change

picture of Neill Richardson

I have met with the Landlords representatives. They have agreed to review the current system, investigate whether a second screen could be added at a lower height and whether the current model is the best for sensory impairment. They have also agree to improve the signs.

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