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Segregating By Sex In Hospitals

Row over mixed-sex hospital wards

OK, I've not really had any long stints in hospital, so maybe I'd feel differently if I had, but this ones got me confused? Why is this an issue?

Why do we need to segregate by sex in hospital wards?

If it's just a question of dignity, then surely you could easily suffer the same loss of dignity around members of the same sex? Besides isn't that what they put the curtains around the beds for? I would like to think they'd use them when there was any risk of loss of dignity.

I guess this is just an issue that I just don't get.


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
23rd Nov, 2006 23:52 (UTC)
I think it's more of an issue with old people who've been brought up to believe more strongly that looking ill or not-dressed in front of the other sex is not the done thing - and most people in hospitals are old, especially among longer stay patients.
24th Nov, 2006 00:27 (UTC)
It is common for sexes to be separated in, e.g. hostels, many women like to be able to shut random men out from where they are sleeping. You can lose your dignity in a hospital ward to some extent, even with curtains, and it can seem worse in front of the opposite sex. On the other hand, I'm sure there are more pressing issues in the NHS.
24th Nov, 2006 00:30 (UTC)
Oh, that's true. The nurse button doesn't bring a nurse for at least 10 minutes in the middle of the night, and the SERIOUSLY SEND A NURSE RIGHT NOW button isn't reachable from the bed, really. If some random bloke had chosen to attack me while out of my skull on tramadol, I wouldn't have had a hope. (But his name and address, and NHS number, would have been on record - but the damage would have been done.)
24th Nov, 2006 09:34 (UTC)
When lieing face down, with your bum in the air, post surgery, that last thing you want to be thinking of is what is the person in the bed across from you thinking, and this is gnerally easier if the other perosn has one almost the same, beleive me.

I suspect is stems from Victorian morals, and is now slightly outdated (as the person in the bed across the way might be very open about fancying you), but when it comes to reduced stress, single sex wards win for me everytime. Its possibly one of the few places I might rein in my flurting.
24th Nov, 2006 09:39 (UTC)
In general, I think a more healthy attitude to nudity / being around members of the opposite sex is a good thing, and (for example) support unisex toilets, etc.

But given we don't have that sort of situation, it doesn't seem at all surprising that hospital wards are segrigated.

When I was in hospital one evening, quite vunerable and exhausted and drugged up, a mad? drunk? old man tried to climb into bed with me, and it was most unpleasent.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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