Hospital Wards: Gender

Health written question – answered on 24th January 2008.

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Photo of John Randall John Randall Conservative, Uxbridge

To ask the Secretary of State for Health

(1) what recent discussions he has had on the phasing out of mixed sex wards in hospitals; and if he will make a statement;

(2) how many mixed sex wards there are in (a) England and (b) Greater London, broken down by London borough.

Photo of Ann Keen Ann Keen Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Health Services), Department of Health

Single-sex accommodation should be the norm for elective care, and remains the ideal for all admissions. We have made this clear in this year's operating framework.

Guidance issued to the national health service requires the provision of single sex accommodation, which can take a number of forms. NHS trusts may provide single rooms, single-sex bays within a mixed ward, single-sex wards or combinations of these types. We do not collect information on the number of trusts who have mixed sex wards per se.

The NHS Operating Framework for 2008-09 includes a requirement for primary care trusts to agree, publish and implement stretching local plans for improvement, with identified timescales and monitoring mechanisms.

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