CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Hospitals using hotels for patient stays is alarming

18 May, 2017

• I WAS extremely concerned to hear of the news that hospitals are spending millions on hotels in order to ensure outpatients can access a bed overnight.

The Royal Free alone has apparently been spending more than £400,000 on sending over 1,700 patients to the Premier Inn!

Though I clearly do not believe that our world-class medical professionals would act to the detriment of the patient safety, it cannot become the case that our NHS is dependent on hotels to treat outpatients, not least those with cancer.

A reliance on rooms beyond the hospitals’ premises will only serve to put our crumbling health service under even greater financial strain. Hotels will charge expensive rates and it surely cannot be a sustainable approach to outpatient care.

To me, the move highlights the desperate situation facing NHS trusts as they struggle to cope with the funding pressures caused by a negligent government. I concur with the view of Tulip Siddiq who says a “it is a sad indictment of chronic underfunding”. She is certainly correct, but it is a tragedy that local politicians have to say such things.

ELI MACHOVER NW3

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