Wathwood Hospital (Medium Secure Service) Independent Patients Advocacy Service
Address and phone
Gypsy Green Lane
Tel: 01709 870839
Project Manager: Becky Lilley
Operations & Development Manager: Nigel Lobley
Wathwood provides medium secure inpatient services to male adult individuals who experience mental distress, offering assessment, treatment and rehabilitation. Wathwood aims to reduce the distress associated with mental health and promote recovery working to reduce associated risks associated and tailor treatment to meet each person’s needs.
Our advocacy services are always independent and not influenced by any other support a person may be receiving from other organisations, ensuring we can fully represent their views and wishes while valuing and learning from their lived experiences.
People who use the service are admitted from:
- secure hospitals
- general mental health services
- independent sector hospitals
Advocacy types provided:
Generic or general advocacy is about providing support to people with mental health and/or capacity needs within health and social care services. This can be across a wide range of day-to-day issues that are important to them but fall outside the remit of statutory advocacy services.
This could involve supporting/representing people at important meetings or signposting to, or helping people make contact with relevant departments, services and agencies. We ensure the person we are supporting are fully involved and understand the process being followed.
Our advocates do this by:
- Offering; 1:1 issue-based advocacy. We listen to the individual and ensure we understand the issue before discussing a range of options so that person can make an informed choice as to how best try to achieve a desired outcome.
- Work only on the instruction of the individual they are supporting. The person decides what support they would like and what they want their advocate to do. We don’t make decisions for the person or tell them what to do and are non-judgemental in our approach.
- Offering a flexible approach to advocacy; adapting styles of working and communication to meet individual need.
- Support the person in expressing their own views, needs, wishes and worries.
- Helping people to participate and contribute in discussions or meetings about things that are important to them may be affecting their life.
- Representing the person’s wishes/views if they feel unable, or if they are not able to do so themselves.
- Most importantly, our advocates work towards empowering the individual to self-advocate in the future.
Referrals usually come from the individual seeking advocacy support. We will however act on referrals from other sources, but the person can choose not to meet the advocate or turn down any support offered if they did not make the referral themselves.
What services do Together’s IMHAs offer?
Our IMHAs give information on, and help people to understand, the legislation they are subject to and how this affects their lives. This may include the conditions or restrictions placed on them and their rights under the MHA 1983 (amended 2007). IMHAs can also help the person to understand what medical treatment is being given or proposed and give information on the authority under which the treatment would be given.
Who is eligible?
- People who are liable to be detained under the MHA 1983 (amended 2007)
- People subject to guardianship
- People on Supervised Community Treatment Orders (SCT)
- Informal individuals who are discussing the possibility of treatment to which S57 or S58A applies (neurosurgery for mental disorder or ECT for a person under 18 years).
How we can help
Our IMHAs will meet with the person in private to discuss issues or concerns relating to their care and treatment. The IMHA will ensure they fully understand the issues and what information is required before agreeing with the individual the appropriate level of support needed. The IMHA will then act on instruction from the person, we will not tell the them what to do.
Part of this work may require the IMHA to meet with any person who is professionally involved with the individual’s treatment. The IMHA will also be able to (on instruction from the individual) inspect any records relating to the person’s detention or treatment and any Social Services Authority records that relate to that individual.
If the person lacks capacity, the IMHA can still request access to records for a specific reason, however, in this circumstance the person holding the records must consider whether it is appropriate and necessary for the IMHA to have access to the records.
Accessing the service
Referrals can come from anyone and we will always comply if the request is reasonable, however IMHAs have a duty to respond and visit the person if the request comes from:
- The person themselves
- A responsible clinician
- An approved Mental Health Professional
- The nearest relative
People can choose not to meet the IMHA or turn down any support offered if they did not make the referral themselves.