Secure mental health services for women

Our national secure service for women recognises individual strengths as well as needs. Our service ethos is that women have the right to support, treatment and care from a multi-disciplinary team and are partners in their own recovery.

Select ward name for details of the service.

No beds available
Limited beds available
Beds available


An admission, treatment and recovery service for women with personality disorder and complex needs.
An admission and treatment service for women with mental illness and complex needs.


An admission, stabilistation, treatment and recovery service for women with mental illness and personality disorder.


An admission, treatment and rehbilitation service for women with personality disorder.
An admission, intensive treatment and rehbilitation service for women with mental illness
Admission and assessment unit for adult women with personality disorders, mental illness and mild learning disability.
Treatment, rehabilitation and recovery for older women (over 45) with complex mental illness and challenging behaviour.
Sinclair is a 15 bedroomed low secure unit for women from the age of 18
Spencer South is a specialist low secure service providing comprehensive DBT for women with borderline personality disorder.


No wards available
Sorry, no wards available at this location

Gender specific provision, with dedicated treatment models and leading specialist experts, enable us to deliver the best possible outcomes for the women in our care. Specialist in-house multi-disciplinary teams are able to support women with severe emotional and behavioural difficulties, challenging behaviour and treatment-resistant psychosis.

Through a comprehensive assessment programme and risk management structure, we are able to outline a care pathway that aims to encourage our women to embrace increased levels of responsibility, replacing counterproductive behaviours with positive ones, building skills and therefore reducing risk. Through this approach, they move towards less restriction and, when appropriate, can begin to access community services.

Tailored assessment instruments

To ensure we understand the women we work with, we have developed a range of unique tools through research:

  • SAFARI – St Andrew’s Fire and Risk Instrument
  • SASKAI – St Andrew’s Sexual Knowledge and Attitudes Instrument
  • HoNOS-Secure – Health of the Nation Outcome Scale.

In addition, a range of nationally accepted measures are used, such as:

  • START – Short-Term Assessment of Risk and Treatability
  • HCR-20 - Historical Clinical Risk-20.

A tailored approach to therapies

We use a range of treatment philosophies based on social learning theory, which inform our psychosocial treatment programmes, including:

  • RAID – Reinforce Appropriate, Implode Disruptive
  • CBT – Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
  • DBT – Dialectical Behavioural Therapy
  • PCP – Person Centred Planning.

A unique Psychosocial Manualised Treatment Programme has been developed, including 15 treatment manuals that follow a common model.

Gender specific and gender sensitive groups, based on core and non-core treatments, are offered throughout the care pathway, and include groups focused on:

  • dealing with feelings
  • social problem solving
  • interpersonal effectiveness
  • understanding and overcoming substance misuse
  • living with mental illness.

Improving body image

We are the only provider in the UK able to offer Body Image and Self-care Therapy, which aims to help our service users overcome self-esteem issues.

Tailored groups, adapted to meet the needs of those with concentration or motivation difficulties, include Understanding Unusual Experiences and Distress Tolerance. There are also relaxation groups, and sessions that provide an opportunity for women to reflect on positive and risk behaviours and complete behavioural chain analyses.

Clinical outcome information is routinely collected and reported, with progress tracked throughout. As new skills are built and risk reduced, a move towards less restriction can take place.

Complete pathways of care

Within our national secure service for women we provide flexible care pathways across medium, low and non-secure services. Discharge is considered at the point of admission and clinical and social work teams will work with local area teams to manage transition into either the community or supported accommodation.

CQC and Quality Network feedback



  • Sunley
  • Stowe
  • Sinclair
  • Elgar


  • Moor Green



  • Maldon



Treating people with respect and involving them in their care
Providing care, treatment and support that meet people’s needs
Caring for people safely and protecting them from harm
Quality and suitability of management