We recognise that adolescence is a time when young people are developing more independence and beginning to make choices about their own health. The choices they make at this age can have long lasting effects and impact on them becoming happy and healthy adults.
The national Department of Health quality criteria looks at all key areas which young people have said are important to them in a health service. Over the past two years we have improved services to ensure we are able to meet the criteria in all areas.
This has included the development of our children and young people website to help ensure young people have information about the services we offer and how to access them.
We have also ensured that the staff who work in the department have the training they need to understand the needs of young people. This includes ensuring that staff understand the issues around consent and confidentiality and that they can explain these to young people and their parents or carers. Nathan, the local artist whose has decorated the department for us, has recently designed artwork for a poster we developed with young people to explain young people’s right to confidential services. This poster has been adopted nationally by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health.
The separate waiting areas for young people in the outpatient department, emergency department and the young people’s chill out room on the ward are examples of our ongoing work to ensure the environment and atmosphere are young people friendly.
A recent survey of young people who visited our department showed that over 85% of young people agreed that their treatment was private and they were happy with the way that staff spoke to them. We continue to listen to the feedback from the young people and want to hear their views about how we can make their services even better for them.