Same Sex Accommodation

The Trust fully complies with the Government’s requirement to eliminate mixed-sex accommodation, except when it is in the patient’s overall best interest or reflects their personal choice.

All our wards at City Hospital, Sandwell General Hospital, Rowley Regis Hospital and Leasowes Intermediate Care Centre are compliant with the national standards. This means:

  • The room where your bed is will only have patient of the same sex as you;
  • The toilet and bathroom will be just for your gender and will be close to your bed area

It is possible that there will be both men and women patients 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 the opposite-sex areas.

You may share some communal space such as day rooms or dining rooms and it is very likely that you will see both men and women patients as you move around the hospital (e.g. on your way to x-ray or to 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.

If you need help to use the toilet or take a bath then you may be taken to a “unisex” bathroom used by both men and women but a member of staff will be with you and other patients will not be in the bathroom at the same time

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

What this means in our hospitals

In our Trust this means that:

  • Patients admitted to Sandwell Hospital, Rowley Regis Hospital or the wards in the Sheldon Block at City Hospital are admitted to same-sex bays clearly separate from the main ward corridor. Patients have access to separate male and female toilet and washing facilities on each ward.
  • Patients admitted to the main wards at City Hospital are admitted to same-sex wards.
  • Patients admitted to Leasowes Intermediate Care Centre are admitted to single rooms with ensuite separate washing and toilet facilities. A shared large shower room is used however for patients unable to use their en-suite facilities as a result of their clinical condition.
  • We are committed to ensuring high standards of privacy and dignity for all our patients all of the time. These standards are regularly audited on all of our wards to ensure they are maintained.

There is a small number of specialist areas where we may not always be able to separate men and women, including:

  • The Critical Care Units at both hospitals
  • The Coronary Care Units at both hospitals
  • The Acute Stroke and Brain Injury unit at City Hospital
  • Recovery areas in our theatres.

Our Emergency Assessment Unit at Sandwell Hospital and the Medical Assessment Unit and Surgical Assessment Unit at City Hospital operate with a series of same-sex bays. Sometimes when we are exceptionally busy it has been necessary to admit patients to mixed-sex bays in these units and we are continuing to work with these units to avoid this in future.