Woodlands to open male and female wards in place of mixed unit

Woodlands Mental Health Unit, Hastings ENGSUS00120120103091641
Woodlands Mental Health Unit, Hastings ENGSUS00120120103091641

Two new wards – one for women and one for men – are opening at the Woodlands Centre for Acute Care.

The centre, in Hastings, provides inpatient care for adults with acute mental health conditions and is run by Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

The new female ward has 14 beds and has been named Abbey Ward, and the male ward has nine beds and is called Castle Ward.

The idea to change the layout at Woodlands, from one mixed ward to two single sex wards, came from staff working on the ward, who felt the changes would make a safer and improved therapeutic environment for both the patients and staff.

Matron Liz Discombe said: “I’m really excited we got the opportunity to develop the service we provide at Woodlands. Having single male and female wards means we can provide specialised quality care and treatment to both men and women whose needs are often so different.

“Generally women who come in to our service may feel especially vulnerable or have families and find it difficult to be away from them, where when men come to us they may be single, divorced or have misused substances. We feel the care, treatment and environment our patients need to get well again is better suited to be provided separately, because we can tailor the needs of each individual in a better way.

“Patients will still have the opportunity to mix in communal areas if they want to or they can stay within their own ward.

“We’re looking forward to providing workshops on the wards and out in the community and identify other areas which will help our patients get better and return to the community.”