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Service users benefit from exciting new refurbishment

20 Mar 24

Service users on an inpatient unit are reaping the benefits from a new kitchen and sensory room.

The new facilities are based on Oak Ward, which is a male psychiatric intensive care unit and are also used by those on Beech Ward, which is a low secure unit.

HPFT has welcomed feedback from service users who have helped to design the new rooms and have contributed ideas about what they would like them to include and colour schemes.

The therapy kitchen has been made as homely as possible and acts as an oasis away from the main ward environment. It is is already being used for cookery sessions and supporting the Occupational Therapists (OT’s) to carry out observation assessments that are necessary for discharge.

Michela Clarke is one of the OT’s who has been using the new kitchen:

“As OT’s we are working with service users to assess their function and preparing them for when they go home. We look at things like how they can budget and how they use ingredients to plan and make a meal. We also look at whether they can perform tasks such as making a hot drink.”

Service users often want to make food for others and the kitchen serves as a social opportunity and promotes building connections with others through sharing of a meal. This helps to support their wellbeing and improve their quality of life while on the ward.

The cookery sessions encourage service users to maintain their skills and knowledge within the kitchen and also provides a social occasion where they can mix with others. Service users are enjoying the sessions and have been described as opening up in ways they might not have done previously.

The sensory room is a tranquil and interactive space which is used by OT’s as well as nursing staff and healthcare assistants. It provides a much needed quiet and private space for service users on the ward. Service users enjoy the projections on the wall, a sound system and interactive gel panels. The room can also be tailored for the individual as people respond differently to different stimuli. It has been observed that service users seem better able to manage any stress after a session in the sensory room and one service user described how they felt safe in there.

LED light in the sensory room  


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