Qi project: Crofton Ward, Bracton Centre

Improving privacy for service users when communicating with friends and family at the Bracton Centre

Project leads:

Nana Ansah, Ward Manager
Rashid Ghooran, Charge Nurse
Aimee Barker, Healthcare Assistant

Reason for project:

At the Bracton Centre, we consider privacy for our service users an important aspect of their patient experience. This project was in response to comments made at the user forum. The mobile phone pilot project gives service users the option of purchasing a mobile phone. The pilot will identify ways of improving privacy and communications with friends and family of service users on Crofton ward, at our medium secure unit.

Our aim:

  • Increase privacy for service users when communicating with their carers, friends and family
  • Promote easy access and positive contact on the ward using mobile phones
  • Improve patient experience within the ward environment.

What we did:

  • Giving service users the opportunity to purchase a mobile phone enabled them to contact friends and family in the privacy of their own room as opposed to using the communal ward payphone
  • The model of phone was carefully selected and offered basic call and text functions only, with no internet or camera access
  • The criteria for having a mobile phone was a negative drug swab, no pending court cases and that it had been approved by the ward team
  • A survey was designed to gain feedback on how service users felt their privacy and contact with friends and family was affected following the introduction of mobile phones
  • For those without a mobile phone, this project would also reduce queues for the communal phone
  • An operational policy was also developed with guidelines for inclusion in the pilot project.

What we learnt:

Crofton Ward

  • Positive feedback was received from service users, family members and support networks about the introduction of mobile phones on the ward
  • Results indicated that service users with access to a mobile phone felt they had more privacy when contacting their friends and family. There was also an increase in their ability to decide when they contact their friends and families
  • Those service users without a mobile phone also benefited since there was less competition for the communal ward phone.

Future plans:

  • Working in partnership with service users to identify ways we can continue to further improve privacy
  • Sharing our learning and best practice with other wards
  • Installing a second communal phone in a more private area on the ward to provide more privacy for all service users.

“ ...very good, I like the
mobile phones; I can talk
to family in my room.”

Service user, Crofton Clinic

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