Health and Community Services Complaints Commission Report on Investigation of Royal Darwin Hospital Security Arrangements for the protection of Children and Infants Paediatric Ward 5B Volume 1
Tabled paper 163
Tabled papers for 11th Assembly 2008 - 2012; Tabled papers; ParliamentNT
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53. Manager mainly to two senior public servants and the reliance by the Health Minister on what those three choose to disclose to the Minister and to the accrediting body, ACHS, is not consistent with accountability. Accountability at top level is, in my view, a necessary prerequisite to improvement. The Hospital Management Boards Act was intended to achieve that. It is not known to what extent it does so. In this case no records existed of the Board considering the rape of the infant. HCSCC Q15: Who approves the updating of the Paediatric Ward/s Policy/plans? RDH response: Depending on the type of Policy, procedure or protocol, endorsement may be through: Referenced to research and / or peer review eg use in another facility. Endorsed by Nursing and Midwifery Council RDH (a group of CNMs and ND et al set up in 2007 to replace the Nursing Advisory Group). Some Policy may go to Nursing Executive, RDH Executive for endorsement and / or to key personnel for support. HCSCC Q16: Are guidelines in place about children of opposite gender sharing a room? If so, identify all such guidelines and the dates? RDH response: No, there is no written procedure. Adult and Child accepted descriptor ie 13 years and over admit to the Adult ward and are managed as an outlier23. Babies and young children are usually kept in one area. Medical/clinical knowledge about individual child behaviour and needs is taken into account eg. Pubertal/Post pubertal and commons sense (sic commonsense). HCSCC Comment: During interview, the CNC of Ward 5B stated that (point S page 25 above) children in rooms should only be of the same sex, she could not provide a reason why the 5 months old female was placed in a room with an 8-year-old boy. It would be beneficial considering the belief of the CNC that a written procedure be developed to cover such an issue. If the CNC of Paediatrics is uninformed of a policy how can she/he impart knowledge to staff? HCSCC Q17: How are staff informed of the guidelines relating to security procedures, including opposite genders sharing a room? RDH response: Staff are to follow the Absconding Policy- Discharge of Patients who Leave Hospital without Official Discharge / Patient Absconding Policy (RDH, 2000). Patients who Leave Hospital without Official Discharge (Take own Leave) Policy (DHCS Acute Care Division NT Hospital Network Manual. Attachment 11. 23 Concise Oxford Dictionary Outlier: Outlying part or member.
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