Info on The Henderson

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Info on The Henderson

Post  Admin on Tue Jan 08, 2008 9:31 am

Henderson Hospital
Redefining personality
For people
difficulties . . .
Information for
prospective residents
Do you want to feel like you belong?
Do you flit from one crisis to another?
Do you have destructive coping strategies?
Are you finding it really hard to get on with your life?
Do you need to deal with your past and move on?
Then read on . . .
What’s special about the Henderson Hospital
The Henderson is a therapeutic community which
aims to help people aged between 18 and 60 solve
emotional and relationship problems through
living together in a structured environment.
As a resident, you will collaborate every day
with the staff in running the hospital. The proper
working of, and responsibility for, the unit depends
entirely upon your active participation.
This collaborative and democratic style forms a
cornerstone of the therapy. For you this may be the
first time that your views have been taken seriously,
and that you have been given the opportunity to
discuss the feelings behind your actions.
Psychotropic medication is not used as part of the
treatment at the Henderson Hospital. Many of
the residents will have been prescribed tranquillizers
or anti-depressants as part of their treatment in
the past, but you must be free of medication by
the end of your third week at the hospital.
Treatment at the Henderson is entirely voluntary
and, as a resident, you are free to leave at any
time. However, the therapeutic programme lasts
up to one year, and research has shown that the
longer residents stay – at least 6 to 9 months –
the better they cope after leaving.
It’s a privilege to
be here. It was
my last chance.

Sculpture by an ex-resident
About the residents, the Henderson and
its staff
Once at the Henderson, you are known as a
resident. This acknowledges the healthy aspects of
your personality and encourages you to participate
actively in the treatment of yourself and others.
Most residents have long histories of emotional,
interpersonal and behavioral difficulties, which
may have been expressed through impulsive, violent
or self-harming behavior. Usually residents have
a diagnosis of personality disorder.
Many will also have received treatment for
associated problems such as alcohol or illicit drug
misuse, eating or mood disorders, and other
psychological symptoms.
Many residents have experienced serious neglect or
physical, emotional or sexual abuse in earlier years.
Some residents may have been detained
previously under a Section of the Mental Health
Act (1983). All residents need to be free of such
restrictions on admission, although some may be
under a straightforward probation order.
The Henderson Community consists of up to
29 residents, each with their own bedroom and
washbasin. Bedding and towels are provided. There
are communal lounges, recreational spaces and
laundry rooms. Leisure areas include squash and
badminton courts, a pool room, a workshop,
television rooms and spacious gardens.
The staff team is multi-disciplinary and includes
an art therapist, nurses, psychiatrists, psychologists,
psychotherapists, social therapists and social workers.
The Henderson Hospital encourages tolerance
and diversity, welcoming people regardless of
class, ethnicity or sexual orientation.
Sometimes I
wonder why
I put myself
through this
then I remember
who I was before.

2 3
Applying to become a resident
Once the referral has been received and if it is felt
that you could be helped by the Henderson, you
will either be invited to attend an interview at
the Henderson Outreach Service (in Vauxhall),
or invited directly to a selection group at the
Henderson community itself.
The selection group consists of three staff and up
to nine established residents. In this group you will
need to outline your current and past problems,
and explain why you are seeking treatment. It is
very important that you are entirely honest with
the selection group.
Following the interview, the group then votes
whether to offer you a place. If there are vacancies,
you will be offered admission for the following
week. Sometimes there is a short waiting list.
Should the vote go against offering you a place,
you will be invited to contact the Outreach
Service to discuss why and what direction your
future treatment might take.
The treatment
You will participate actively in your own and fellow
residents’ therapy through a range of intensive
groups and social activities. You will be expected
to take responsibility for choices and decision
making, contributing to one another’s therapy.
Members of staff maintain the structure needed
for the community to be therapeutic, sometimes
intervening in groups or promoting analysis and
discussion of events within the community. Urgent
community meetings may be called to discuss
important issues at any time of day or night.
Honesty is a vital part of the therapeutic process.
It is important for you to be as open as you can
and to learn to say what is going on for you. This
includes asking for support if you need it.
The community relies on mutual trust and this is one
reason why there are no locks on bedroom doors.
Except in an emergency, neither residents nor staff
can enter another’s bedroom without permission.
In order to keep everyone safe there are certain
important rules. The main ones are:
■ no self harm
■ no alcohol misuse
■ no drugs
■ no violence
■ using therapy groups and respecting boundaries
The consequences for breaking different rules will
become clearer as you become a resident. At one
extreme you will automatically discharge yourself
if you break a major rule and then you will have
to ask the community for permission to stay until
a deciding vote has been taken.
Don’t give up
before you’ve
given it a chance

4 5
Daily activities
Each day, Monday to Saturday, starts with a one
hour community meeting which involves all
residents and all members of staff. After this you
will be in smaller groups. These range from Art
therapy and Psychodrama to work groups such as
gardening and maintenance or food ordering. The
remainder of the structured therapy programme
runs until 4.30pm each day Monday to Friday.
Members of the community eat together in the
early evening, after cooking the meal and then
washing up. Every four weeks you will be elected
by the community to carry out these and other
Jobs looking after one another’s practical needs.
At least once during your therapy at the Henderson,
you will be elected to become part of ‘Top 3’
whose job it is to maintain a bridge between
residents and staff and carry out other important
tasks like chairing community meetings. Not doing
your job has consequences, and the community
will expect you to discuss why you were unable
to do it.
Evenings are free for you to organize with fellow
residents, making use of the recreational facilities
or socialising within the community. As the
weekend approaches, you will need to discuss
how you plan this unstructured period. You may
negotiate weekend absence from the community
to spend time with relatives or friends if you wish.
Friends and relatives are welcome to visit by
negotiation with the community. There is a nonsmoking
visitors’ room in the hospital. However,
to respect the privacy of other residents, visitors
are not permitted to enter the rest of the building.
Confidentiality is not only held within the
community but also shared with fellow residents.
Information should not be kept as secrets between
individual residents but shared in groups so that
people can support one another and openly
discuss risks. However, residents and staff must
not pass information to any relative or friend
without the resident’s consent.
Do something
you can be proud
of, you deserve it

6 7
Residents may claim state benefit income on
a similar basis to that claimed by patients in
other hospitals.
Before you leave
During your treatment there will be regular
community reviews and your referring team
will also be invited to Care Programme
meetings. You will be encouraged to address
emotional and practical issues around leaving
the community.
As your planned date of discharge approaches,
you will attend a once weekly Leavers Transition
group and then continue in that group for six
months after leaving the Henderson at the
Outreach premises in Vauxhall.
Addresses and contacts
Henderson Hospital
2 Homeland Drive
Surrey SM2 5LT
Tel: 020 8661 1611 Fax: 020 8770 3676
Sutton is about 15 miles south of central London.
Regular trains run to Sutton from London Victoria,
London Bridge and Kings Cross.
Henderson Outreach Service
132 Wandsworth Road
Tel: 020 7622 9337 Fax: 020 7622 9164
The nearest national rail stations are Vauxhall,
London Victoria and Waterloo. The nearest tube
station is Vauxhall – on the Victoria line. Buses
which pass the door are routes 77, 87, 196.
More information can be found on the internet at:
You may also contact us at:
The Henderson Hospital is a three storey building
with no lift access.
There is light
at the end of the
tunnel, we can
help you on
your way.


Posts : 13
Join date : 2007-12-20

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