Bowel management with spinal cord injured people

Lauren Theodosi made this Freedom of Information request to South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Dear South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust,

By way of introduction, I work for the Spinal Injuries Association. Part of my role is to assist the Head of Public Affairs with FOI requests, such as the one that follows.

As a request under the Freedom of Information Act, please provide the following information on bowel management for spinal cord injured people and others with neurogenic bowel dysfunction
1. Does the Trust have a formal written policy for digital rectal examination/check, digital rectal stimulation and the digital removal of faeces (manual bowel evacuation) in spinal cord injured and other patients with neurogenic bowel dysfunction ?
2. If the Trust does, please supply a copy of this document.
3. If the Trust does not, how is bowel care managed in the above patient groups who present with this care need?
4. Does the Trust employ a specialist continence nurse(s)?
5. If the Trust employs a specialist continence nurse(s) can they (a) undertake digital rectal checks, digital rectal stimulation and digital removal of faeces (manual bowel evacuation), otherwise known as 'intimate digital bowel care procedures' (b) provide instruction to other nurses to enable them to perform intimate digital bowel care procedures'?
6. If the Trust does not employ a specialist continence nurse, is there another health care professional who undertakes intimate digital bowel care procedures including manual bowel evacuation? If yes, who does this?
7. Does your Trust have a policy in place that will allow your staff to do trans-anal irrigation (TAI) of the bowel as a method of bowel care management for spinal cord injured patients? Do you train your staff to do TAI/ bowel irrigation?
8. Do you run bowel care courses for your staff that allows them to deliver the full range of bowel care required by spinal cord injured patients or others with a neurogenic bowel?
9. If yes, please provide details. If no, does the Trust have a policy which allows for the personal care assistants (PAs) of spinal cord injured patients to assist with this element of the patient's care?

Yours faithfully,

Lauren Theodosi

Freedom of Information Requests, South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust

2 Attachments

Dear Ms Theodosi

Thank you for your request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Please find attached the response from South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust.

If you are unhappy with the way your request for information has been handled, you can request a review by writing to: Private Office, South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust, Harton Wing, Harton Lane, South Shields, NE34 0PL or via email at [email address] .

If you remain dissatisfied with the handling of your request or complaint, you have a right to appeal to the Information Commissioner at: The Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF. Telephone: 0303 123 1113 Website: There is no charge for making an appeal.

The Commissioner’s Office will not normally hear a complaint until the internal complaints procedure has been completed.

I hope that this is helpful.


Yours sincerely
Freedom of Information
South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust

Freedom of Information
South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust

Based at:
Harton Wing
South Tyneside District Hospital
Harton Lane
South Shields
NE34 0PL

Telephone: 0191 4041000
Email: [email address]

Providing a range of NHS services across Gateshead, South Tyneside and Sunderland

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