Pros and perils of social media in a mental health inpatient setting

This joint post with @chaosandcontrol came about through a Twitter conversation we had about her experience of mental health staff confiscating her smartphone whilst she was an inpatient, which she has blogged about here. There came a connecting together of minds – @chaosandcontrol’s desire to influence mental health service social media policies and my desire to improve ours so our staff have the resources they need to support people effectively. Here’s our conversation:

VB – what do you think staff were worried about in terms of your use of social media when you were a patient on the ward?

CaC – There was a concern that patients could write anything about themselves, other patients or staff, be it fact or fiction.  To some folks, social media is an unknown quantity, and sadly, the unknown has a great capacity to scare. You don’t have to Google very hard to find stories of employees disciplined or sacked as a consequence of posting inappropriate things on social media sites. Indeed, I wonder whether information surrounding the dismissal and disciplining of NHS staff adds fuel to the fire? Not that long ago, a pocket watch was the must have latest gadget. Were patients allowed to keep them when they were admitted to the asylum? Or, did they have to refer to the clock in the main building several fields away? I am not well read enough on my history to know the answer to that question. The point that I am trying to make is that we’re in the 21st century; smart phones, the internet and social media are not going to disappear. As such, it is time to embrace what is here to stay. I would like to see social media embraced rather than ignored.

VB – what do you think about the role of advance agreements/decisions in helping people think about their use of social media when they are well, so they have a plan in place should they become unwell?

CaC – there are several strands that need to be unravelled. Are patients putting stuff on social media they later regret? If so, that’s where the advance directive can be really helpful. When a named nurse sits down with a patient to discuss their care plan (yes, I am being idealistic here!), I think an honest conversation about phones ought to happen. If a patient is in possession of a smart phone, staff should encourage the patient to think about what (if anything) they post on social media. Remind the patient that if they want to give up their phone for a time, staff can facilitate that. In addition, staff might want to explore whether it’s better for the patient to simply watch what’s happening on their preferred social media sites rather than being an active user during the acute phase of their illness.

VB – I’m aware that some inpatient and crisis services in the NHS and voluntary sector, have a ban on use of social media for people using their services. What do you think about that? Does it help or hinder recovery?

CaC - personally, I don’t think there should be an outright ban on the use of social media because it can play a beneficial role in recovery. Me? I was told to stop blogging because I might write a bunch of lies and then publish it on the web. This takes quite a dim view of the patient. If staff are notified of or discover a blog, they should review its content and make a decision with the patient accordingly. If it doesn’t breach staff/other patient’s confidentiality then where’s the problem? It’s a low risk situation. I firmly believe that staff should take action if the patient is naming the specific ward in which they are residing and writing extensively about other staff/patients to the point of them being identifiable. Back in my undergraduate days, a number of my friends were student nurses and did placements every term. They talked about patients in vagaries because if I could identify the patient to whom they were referring by nipping up to the ward, they had broken confidentiality. I see no reason why the same principle shouldn’t apply to the use of social media.

VB – how can staff make sure they build consideration of social media and mobile technology into their day to day practice?

CaC – I would really like to see stuff about mobile phones written into ward orientation leaflets and spelled out when given an initial tour of the ward. How about organising a designated mobile phone lounge? If space is an issue, why not allow patients to use a specific area of the ward? For example, an activities room or ward round room is unlikely to be in constant use. That way, if patients want to text/make a phone call etc, it’s done in private. If a patient has their phone out then staff can direct the patient to their bedroom or the phone lounge. This has the advantage of phones not being flashed around the ward where photos and videos can be taken.

VB – do you think there should be any sanctions for people who use social media in a way that breaks confidentiality or breaches the agreement then have made with people supporting them?

CaC - I am very keen on a one strike and you’re out rule. For example, at orientation, the rule is made clear… No breaching the confidentiality of other patients through social media. If patients do, phones will be confiscated. If not, patients get to keep their phones. I think this sets clear expectations surrounding acceptable behaviour. 

I would like to see staff following some kind of decision tree about how they proceed in relation to patients using social media. I don’t think it’s fair to take a one-size fits all approach. As such, if staff could be provided with a list of questions to work through and provided with guidance accordingly, this would help subtleties to be appreciated. Instead, what is going to continue is the variance in the treatment of patients. For example, on some wards patients are allowed to keep their mobile phones but must give up cigarette lighters. On other wards, patients are allowed to keep cigarette lighters but must give up their phones. The guidance that has been produced is vague and open to interpretation from ward to ward.

So often guidance is produced as a consequence of an incident and often it’s not particularly nuanced. I recall the psychiatrist who talked to me about my blog mentioned that he was on a steep learning curve about social media. Once I had made a complaint about my treatment, the ward manager could see why I was upset about having my phone confiscated. I have had a mobile phone since I passed my driving test at the age of 17 (I turned 30 a couple of months ago) and it’s more than a phone, it’s part of my lifestyle. For example, I have knitting, news and games apps on my phone too. On the other hand, someone from an older generation might not be so upset to have their phone confiscated.

VB – I am not aware of any inpatient wards or other mental health services which have wifi available for people to access. It strikes me that this would be a great way for people to keep contact with friends and family while they are inpatients. Have you? And would you find this helpful?

CaC – I am aware of patients being able to access the internet in hospitals in Croydon and Gloucester because their policies are available through the Star Wards website. In Oxford password protected wifi is installed but only those with a University of Oxford account (e.g. medical students) can access it. I would be really keen to see wifi available on all hospital wards. Depending on the location of the hospital, some patients might already be able to access the internet through a hotspot. I take the view that it is better to give access rather than driving patients to circumvent the system.

VB – I find social media an important way to keep contact with people, build relationships and networks, and to be sociable. I’d love to hear a bit about the importance of social media for you personally

CaC - To me, social media is about connection. It’s important to highlight that social media can act as a protective factor. For example, through social media gardeners can discuss gardening and exchange tips to their hearts content. Likewise, those who use social media to discuss mental health can do so too. During the complaint process, I highlighted The World of Mentalists  blog as a positive example of social media being used in a mental health context. Support is given and received through social media and I think it’s important to emphasise that sometimes bloggers meet each other in real life too. At times the conversation can be superficial but it can also have depth to it too.

CaC – Do you think there is any mileage in providing training and guidance in relation to social media? Might dispelling myths help to improve staff and patient experience alike?

VB – yes I absolutely think training is very important. Firstly I’m keen that an awareness of social media is built into existing training, such as advance decisions and risk management. Secondly, I think it should be covered in corporate induction for all new staff. Thirdly, I’m a real fan of social media surgeries, in particular the idea of people who are more confident about social media, sharing their knowledge and skills with people who want to learn more.  We experimented with one in 2012 where people using and providing services shared skills and learnt from each other. I hope we will have regular ones running early in the New Year. Lastly, we had some great sessions on digital identity from @gopaldass in 2012 which was very helpful in enabling us to think more deeply about how we craft our identities online. Guidance is very important but I feel it needs to be flexible rather than overly prescriptive and illustrate the opportunities as well as any risks.

CaC – If a patient or a member of their family is publicising a poor experience of being a patient or carer via social media, how do you respond?

VB – our communications team have google alerts set up so we can monitor what is being said about us on the web. We also get comments directly sent to us on Twitter and Facebook. We always aim to respond promptly to any concerns raised, take it offline, and offer to help people sort out their concerns – usually by putting them in contact with our Patient Advice and Liaison Service or the relevant member of staff. If people are talking about us on blogs, for example, we might add a comment to direct people to how they can have their say about a particular issue they are discussing. But we’re keen to avoid wading into things if we don’t feel it is appropriate. We have information about how we use social media on our website.

CaC – What is your view on sites like Patient Opinion? Have you observed any benefits to their use?

VB – we are massive fans of Patient Opinion. We have their widget on our website so anyone visiting our site can see what people are saying about us. Patient Opinion have a system where they send us an automated alert as soon as they post a comment about us. Our communications team then gets in touch with the relevant member of staff and we put together a response as quickly as possible. We always offer an opportunity to meet up if an individual posts a concern about any of our services. We also include every Patient Opinion post in our Board of Directors performance report, so they see each one. We are piloting intensive use of Patient Opinion in our Healthy Living Service between January and March this year so we can evaluate the impact that it has. I’m keen that we increase the number of posts we get and make sure we collect evidence of what has changed as a result. I think the most important benefit of Patient Opinion is that it is independent and visible to everyone – this in itself nudges our culture towards being increasingly transparent.

So the key points for mental health organisations to take away are:

  1. A blanket social media ban isn’t helpful
  2. Build use of social media into advance decision making
  3. Build use of social media into the care planning process
  4. Ask people about social media when they are first assessed on the ward
  5. Don’t confiscate chargers (have them PAT tested so they can be used on the ward)
  6. Be clear about patient confidentiality and consequences of breaking it
  7. Consider providing free wifi on wards
  8. Provide guidance and training for staff

Anything you would add?

You can find a response from Amy at Patient Opinion here

@WeNurses are having a Twitter chat on this topic, and inspired by this blog post, on Thursday 17 January 2013 at 8pm using the hashtag #WeNurses – please do join it – really hoping we get a good mix of contributers with experiencing of both using and working in mental health services.

 

22 Comments

  1. Great post! This is just the kind of thing I’m looking for as I want to embrace social media for use within our own organisation (a mental health NHS trust). Interesting discussion and useful tips. Thank you!

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  2. Very interesting post. I think use of social media, its benefits and and potential concerns surrounding it are highly relevant for those using and working in inpatient settings, both mental and physical health-related. It’s something that can no longer be ignored by staff, managers and policy makers as so many people now use the internet to connect with family, friends, work, support groups, blogs and organizations. I also think concerns will depend on the nature of someone’s illness – I spent several months at a time in eating disorders units, and while social media is valuable for keeping in contact with sources of support, as a form of distraction and motivation, there are many potential dangers to consider, including use of pro-ana websites and other pages that may undermine someone’s treatment and recovery. I definitely think discussing social media when someone is assessed and admitted to the ward is key. Incorporating it into their care plan is important so that if they feel they have a problematic relationship with some sites or forms of online interaction then this can be addressed as part of their admission. Thank you again for a thought-provoking post.

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  3. Well, my local Mental Health Trust , the South London & Maudsley (SLaM) doesnt even have a policy on community based service users communicating with their CMHT’s by email , a checkable fact , and one CCTV surveilled and fortress like CMHT ( and this is community based!) has been fiercely resistant to and resentful about even providing an email address to clients for years and it’s just been officious, obstructive personality driven behaviour from MH professionals which has caused real bureaucratic problems and barriers to treatment , care and support for service users who prefer to communicate by email rather than, say, telephone , where calls can be and often are dealt with offhandedly by Trust staff or simply misinterpreted or forgotten about and of course, many service users have phobias around using telephones anyway. so , much as i am happy to discuss the finer points, practicalities and ethics of service users blogging and doing the whole social thing on the wards lets take time out to paint a more realistic picture of the wider digital communications mh landscape to see where we are first as mh service users as individuals and as members of loose independent common interest groups, have been successfully using the net and social media for years and I can remember two service users blogging live from the wards 5 or 6 years ago , its nothing new, its mental health services and their centralising comms and social media wonks that are rushing to catch up in that respect and lets be frank here, as long as services feel its their right to define, host and dominate this debate they are going to try to impose a restrictive control agenda just as they have done in the past with every other means of communication capable of bridging the gap between the psychiatric institution/wards and the wider community and just use social media and other communication technologies for largely self serving corporate purposes , like the glut of glossy, non-interactive and practically useless mh trust websites out there still broadcasting false impressions of engagement and success on behalf of their service users to massage outcomes and deftly manage the all important corporate reputation .

    and yes, confidentiality is an issue but its not one mental health services actually own or can be trusted to police and if the fear of sousveillance bothers the MH corp execs and mh professionals enough to act on the wards as if their actions and attitudes towards patients were seen and open to public scrutiny then good as that’s a positive outcome as the nasty stuff that still happens on the wards needs to be stamped out anyway .

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    • You raise some really important points about how the NHS doesn’t always use technology to its best advantage. Did you see the article published last year ‘When will the NHS start using email to contact patients?’

      I agree that we were discussing a very specific aspect of technology and it is helpful that you have pointed out other areas need to be addressed too. As I suggested in this post, many staff are unsure about technology, the internet and social media. Sadly I often think staff feel threatened and intimidated by patients who are more savvy than they are on certain topics. As a consequence, as you point out, they retreat into their buildings where it feels safe and secure.

      It seems such a shame that patients are not receiving the full benefits of what technology can offer. I hope that by us discussing these issues and raising awareness of them, they will be addressed by hospital managers.

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      • I’d like to support the points made by @chaosandcontrol and also add that I think that social media create spaces that institutions can’t control or dominate and that is what makes them so interesting and have such radical potential. I agree that transparency and openness if only a problem if services feel they have something to hide.

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  4. I had my phone taken away from me when I was in hospital, I got it back for half an hour every shift (so basically an hour a day) I had it confiscated because when I had been the year before a nurse had fell asleep while watching me on special observation and I took a photo to prove to my guardian that the nurse had fallen asleep and I wasn’t imagining things. Who would you believe the mental health patient or the psychiatric nurse?? I understand I was in the wrong by taking the photo but I never posted it online or sent it to anyone else. If the nurses did they’re job right then people wouldn’t need to take photos, videos or post about they’re care.

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  5. Thanks for sharing your story. Unfortunately, I know of other patients who have done exactly the same thing and taken photos of staff asleep while on duty. It’s totally unacceptable to be sleeping while on duty (unless the member of staff is taking a break on a night shift). Because the photos have been taken when the patients have been really unwell, they have never made it to Trust staff, the Nursing and Midwifery Council, the Care Quality Commission or any other body who is able to take appropriate disciplinary action. Nurses sleeping while doing obs is unacceptable. Full stop.

    From my perspective, I think you did the right thing to take a photo. Had I been in the same position as you, I like to think I would have done the same thing. I don’t even think that what you did was wrong. This brings me back to point I blogged about not that long ago; the power imbalance that exists between staff and patients. If you had done the same thing on a cancer ward, my suspicion is that the outcome would have been very different for you and the nurse.

    I wonder whether some trusts are adverse to technology on the wards because they fear patients will do exactly what you did? That’s why I think it’s important to get guidance written and to produce policy. Because if enough people are able to capture evidence of poor practice then managers have to sit up and take notice. I think the opportunity is right for a journalist to do an expose of psychiatric hospitals.

    I realise I have been rather critical of staff here. I think it’s important to balance this out and say that there are some damn good nurses out there too. I hope that sharing these experiences, by blogging, tweeting, writing to trusts and MPs, momentum will build and change will happen. Sadly, for now, all I can do is sympathise with you.

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    • Very interesting point about using mobile technology to capture/record aspects of poor practice. There is a long tradition of undercover journalists exposing institutional practice through secret photos/filming and the Winterbourne View Panorama programme is a recent example which has had big repurcussions. Citizens will increasingly take the power into their own hands and record poor practice, especially where they are concerned that they won’t be believed, as you describe.

      An important means of reducing the potential for poor practice is to create a culture of openness, transparency, welcoming and acting on feedback. Websites like Patient Opinion are an excellent way to create this because they are both independent and feedback is in the public domain. Social media nudges towards a shift in power because people now can talk to each other in public about their views and experiences for all to see. Institutions, including the NHS, are only just beginning to understand and appreciate this shift in power – a very steep learning curve is taking place.

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  6. the whole point of social media is that its not centralised and over anxiously controlled by powerful institutions or frightened and frustrated elites and with ever cheaper, smaller and more powerful portable devices which enable people to record ,share and mash audio, pictures , video , locational info and data about an increasing array of other things which can be sensed and evidenced , if mh professionals really do believe that retreating back into the building and bowels of the institution is a smart response to foil this infernal technology then they actually deserve to have their resistance to openess and change and their other bad practices exposed , challenged and ridiculed on youtube , fb and the like.

    and it’s not like anyone needs to formally request the express permission of services or comply with their evasive circular bureaucratic processes to do that is it ?

    there is no co-production in that sense, no-one is in any way obliged to co-produce mh system critical content at the editing stage or required to tweet their views of bad practice on the wards in full compliance or even in partnership with service providers, nor do inpatients or mh service users need to be formally involved with ineffectual and often kept service user empowerment bureaucracies in order to post a video of something that should not be happening to them and interestingly, the conversation here and elsewhere captures that mental health services have already predictably taken to heavy handedly confiscating laptops and smartphones from people on the wards but how are they going to police service users , carers and visitors on the wards wearing pendants , watches or glasses with the same fuctionality or even communications devices woven into the very fabric of their clothes?

    if you dont take off that twitter enabled t-shirt miss we are going to sedate and strip you?

    instead of retreating into bunker mentality, services need to learn to use all this new tech to better capture , monitor and openly share data about their services themselves to improve and make them safer, less stigmatising and more humane and user focused all round and as part of that process actually train their people to grasp that trying to resist or ban more interactive tech and sousveillence on the wards or at community sites to protect old power relations and secretive abusive and harmful ways of doing things is as daftly flat earther-like as it is morally wrong.

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  7. Hi there

    I’m James Munro, one of the team running Patient Opinion. I’ve found the blog post and the comments here really interesting and thoughtful (and thanks Victoria for the nice mention!).

    As has been said, social media is creating profound changes, mainly because of how it tends to make things open which previously were closed (and in that sense, it seems like a welcome continuation of the slow opening up of the asylums over the past few hundred years).

    In making things more open and visible, social media is a challenge to prevailing cultures and existing arrangements of power. So it isn’t surprising that it will often be resisted by those who prefer things to stay the same.

    I like as much openness as possible, because it works against abuse and supports our common humanity. But there are some limits here, because in some situations people, especially when vulnerable, should be entitled to privacy. So as inpatient mental health wards (or any other healthcare settings) become more open to external view – for example, because of users taking photos or videos – there is real potential to strengthen the accountability of services, but there is also a risk to the privacy of other users.

    The other tension I feel here is between the constant connection which our new technologies offer, versus the need (sometimes) for retreat and sanctuary. Both connection to others, and disconnection from others, can either be helpful or harmful in different times and places.

    And personally, I’ve found that using Twitter can sometimes feel like a compulsive behaviour – so it isn’t always easy to know when social media is good for my mental state.

    Neither of these tensions will (or should) slow down the use of social media in mental health care settings or anywhere else. Over time, I guess we’ll learn about what the limits to using social media should be, both for ourselves as well as collectively.

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  8. Regarding CandC’s comment,

    Indeed, I wonder whether information surrounding the dismissal and disciplining of NHS staff adds fuel to the fire?

    I think this is absolutely true. There’s a lot of institutional nervousness around social media in the NHS, and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if that contributed to the incident in which CandC had her phone confiscated. Sometimes staff have been on the receiving end of it as well as patients – I get the impression that some NHS managers would prefer it if their staff didn’t use social media at all. But as this article rightly points out, social media is not going to go away, and we can’t and shouldn’t avoid engaging with it.

    Regarding the “take-away” messages at the end of this post, I have little to say other than that I agree entirely.

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  9. those tensions james refers to accompany every technological revolution and usually result in difficult and often imperfect trade offs being made as well as outdated ways of doing things being swiftly swept away but to put the vulnerability of mh service users and patient confidentiality and privacy issues into a realistic rather than very selective change resisting excuse context here even the really useful patient opinion service operates in a way that , because it highlights specific events or concerns, often enables mh and other healthcare institutions to deduce who has praised or complained about their services on the patient opinion site and there’s no practical way of avoiding this – stepping up in any way carries risks.

    and vulnerable or not, there’s often a price to be paid for openly questioning authority – no matter what for – and this obviously holds true for people on psychiatric wards as well, perhaps even more so , however they face a far greater risk of being routinely neglected , abused or physically assaulted on the ward than having their picture taken and published on fb without their permission or consent by another service user and the unwritten policy of banning laptops, tablets and smartphones , etc on the wards and using the vulnerability of patients to justify this , hasn’t helped anyone evidence, manage or reduce that first set of far more deeply entrenched , likely and harmful risks one jot .

    so given the real risks people face ward-side its hardly surprising that people prefer and expect , as of right, to be able to keep their networked devices close at hand and their links to their family, online mates , carers and support communities and favourite hobby or entertainment sites , etc. open on closed , sterile and asocial psychiatric wards rather than spend their time rocking back and forth in deep empathy with the institutional nervousness around new technologies and change.

    i do get zarathustras staff-side point and the fact that mh staff also face dire consequences for openly questioning their employers online, issues which mh workers need to stand up for to the extent that they reasonably and legally can , but i deliberately used ‘as of right ‘ above as the UN recognises unhindered access to the net and freedom of opinion and expression as human rights – perhaps that could be added to the take-away message list as item 1 because “a blanket ban on social media on the wards ” isnt merely unhelpful its unlawful and should be openly denounced as such. it also clearly undermines the patients connectedness, support structures , mental health and wellbeing and , in that sense, constitutes a form of assault .

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  10. Im a senior social worker, working in mental health. I also work in manage social workers in a medium secure facility for people with mental health difficulties diverted from prison.

    My own personal view is that if someone is admitted to an open psychiatric ward for treatment (voluntary or otherwise) we should work from the standpoint that they should be allowed access to their phones and computers etc (at their own risk of course). It should be part of the tick list of items as they come into the ward like any other. That’s the way it is for people going into a physical health ward, why not for a mental health ward? Sheesh, if there’s one time you’d need your social networking its whilst in mental health crisis, surely?! This can be risk assessed like anything else and if there’s an agreement amongst staff that there is an unacceptable level of risk in allowing the person to keep these items (note, unacceptable not just any kind of risk) then this should be discussed with the person themselves. Only if a voluntary agreement could not be reached should the item be confiscated and even then, it should be kept under regular review. Most places should have policies for these things now and why not get patients themselves in writing the policy? They can put forward their experiences and so can staff (negotiating what situations may negate a need for removing the phone / lap top etc). I think any unit removing someone’s phone from them upon admission without any thought or reason is completely unacceptable. We’re dealing with people who need support and treatment after all, not prisoners!

    Reply
    • I think there is a strong theme emerging from this discussion that people both have a right to be connected to their social networks while in hospital, and that it can be an important factor in their recovery.

      If this is the case, then that access ought to be facilitated by the institution concerned. All too often there is no 3G access in hospital wards, either because of the material used in construction of the building (typically glass and metal), because the ward is in a basement, or because the hospital is in a location that doesn’t get good signals.

      Also, even if 3G signals are present, people may not be able to afford the data charges to access the internet. They may have an affordable plan for internet access at home, but many 3G data plans are prohibitively expensive for access for a considerable period of time.

      All these are good reasons why we need free wifi for hospital patients http://freehospitalwifi.wordpress.com/

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    • Thank you so much for your comments Betty. A very clear theme is emerging from people commenting who both work in and use services – people should be able to have access to their phones and staff should help them think through the pros and cons, using advance decision making where this is useful. I think there’s enough in the post and comments for any NHS Trust to pull together a policy and guidance for their staff :-)

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  11. I feel I should clarify here that people should be allowed access to their phones etc (at their own risk) > as in, their own risk of loss / theft etc. Facilities for safe storage of any valuables should be offered, of course.

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  12. Absolutely brilliant blog post Victoria. I have a very close family member who has been in hospital numerous times and has had her phone taken away both by staff and by concerned family after she made numerous calls to friends during the night. I think @chaosandcontrol had a really valid point about advance directives as my family member has previously asked us to remove Facebook posts she has made when unwell but equally found social media hugely beneficial when recovering. The whole post is really thought provoking and really makes you think about our dignity and rights when unwell.

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    • Thank you Emma – really interesting to hear your relative’s experience – it’s all a balance and I think the role of staff is to help people think through what will help them most when they are an inpatient. Blanket bans definitely not the answer.

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  13. This is a fascinating discussion that ive followed with interest here and on twitter. Last year, when this happened to C&C, I wrote a post exploring how there was such a seeming disparity between her comfort, and the utility she found in blogging, versus the institutional, risk-averse approach taken by the in-patient unit. See http://claireot.wordpress.com/2012/01/04/censorship-or-duty-of-care-little-feet-blogging-on-an-acute-mental-health-inpatients-ward/

    This continues to be an issue for so many people who use our services, and as other commenters have posted, there are inherent tensions such as risks to confidentiality of other service users. However, I think the benefits of enabling access to supportive communities for people that engage and develop these communities can’t be denied. Confidentiality risks can be managed, as any other risks are, in practice. Confiscation or banning of devices seems like the very last resort, when all other risk management has not been successful.

    Added to this, there is a risk to the institution of invoking the “Streisand Effect” when attempting to silence online comment or criticism, we all saw how this impacted on the “Never Sconds” debacle as well as C&C’s experience. The corporate benefit/risk analysis is already laid out so well by James, I have little to add.

    I would emphasise to everyone with a Recovery Plan, a WRAP, an Advance Statement or Directive that having access to devices to communicate to the outside world might be something to consider in your crisis plan. Hospital staff will follow the plans you make to the best of their ability (provided the law, and their policies and procedures allow it) so this is a good way to ensure all people involved in your care understand how important your devices and access to the Internet are.

    Star Wards have identified access to the Internet to be one of the most important factors for people on the wards, so I also want to add my support for John’s work to enable access to WiFi for people in hospitals.

    Reply
    • Just a note to say @WeNurses are having a Twitter chat on this topic, and inspired by this blog post, on Thursday 17 January 2013 at 8pm using the hashtag #WeNurses – please do join it – really hoping we get a good mix of contributers with experiencing of both using and working in mental health services.

      Reply

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