Critique of a Rehabilitation Unit

By Andy Berry


At the end of 1996, I moved one rehabilitation unit in the UK to another prior to returning home after a lengthy stay in hospital.

I wrote the original version of this document as I felt appalled that a service like that it described could still operate in the late 1990's. To misquote a popular saying:

"Nice building, shame about the service!"

General Impression

From the first moment I arrived, when nobody greeted me or explained anything about the service, I formed the impression that:


Rehabilitation could mean several different things, but the service had no clear policy on what they were trying to achieve.

This meant:

Were The Service Users Ill?

There was a perception amongst staff at the service that the users were all 'ill' and therefore the emphasis throughout the service is that nursing and medical intervention are paramount.

I suggested:

Nothing too radical there, you might think!

Respecting the Users

I saw others subjected to, and experienced myself, some appalling breaches of reasonable behaviour towards users.

For example:

Re-integrating the Users

The service was quite well placed, next to a shopping street in a major English city, to allow users to prepare to move back into the community - to do things like shopping and enjoy a quiet pint in the pub.


I suggested:


I concluded that I had not enjoyed my time at the service. A typically British understatement!

To get some action, I sent the report to the Chief Executive of the body responsible for the service. Do you know what happened then? Yes - a nice letter blaming a change of staff and then NOTHING… No action, no changes, zilch!

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