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Bournemouth hospital trust threatens to evict medically fit patients who refuse to leave

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 25 November 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g7199
  1. Ingrid Torjesen
  1. 1London

A Dorset hospital trust has warned that it plans to give patients who no longer need to stay there for medical reasons seven days’ notice to vacate their beds, and if they do not do so it will consider “evicting” them.

The Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust told the BBC that, on Wednesday 19 November, 70 of its patients were medically fit to leave and some were remaining in hospital for spurious reasons.

Katie Whiteside, clinical manager for discharge services at the Royal Bournemouth, told the BBC that one family had asked the hospital to “keep hold” of a relative while they took a two week holiday in Turkey. Others had said that they disliked the décor of care homes or the staff member who met them at the door. “Sometimes they are decorating the house or having a ‘granny annexe’ built and they know that, while the patients are here, they are being fed, watered and looked after,” said Whiteside.

Although the trust expects to resolve most such cases through …

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