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Prestwich And Rainhill Hospitals

Volume 961: debated on Tuesday 23 January 1979

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services when the Minister of State recently visited Prestwich and Rainhill hospitals, how many of the places provided in the secure wings were occupied; how many applications for the vacant places were unsatisfied; why the vacant places were not being filled; and what action he is taking.

The interim secure unit at Prestwich hospital has 28 places, of which 14 were occupied. Prior to the visit approximately 30 people had been refused admission since the unit opened. A number of these were considered unsuitable on clinical grounds, but I understand that admissions are also restricted because of difficulty in recruiting nursing staff and continuing opposition to the unit front certain staff working in the hospital who are members of the National Union of Public Employees and the Electrical, Electronic, Telecommunications and Plumbing Union. Salford area health authority (teaching) is mounting recruitment campaigns, and efforts are being made locally and nationally to secure staff co-operation.Regarding Rainhill hospital, nine out of the 14 places were occupied. In the year prior to the visit 21 cases were not accepted on clinical grounds. No suitable patient has been refused admission.