Mental Health Debate

Charles highlights the fact that there will always be a need for in-patient care and raises his concerns that the loss of acute beds will result in very sick people being left out in the community without the help and support they need.

Mr. Charles Walker (Broxbourne) (Con): My hon. Friend makes a good point. We do not want to lock people away in institutions. However, there will always be a need for acute beds. The problem is that if we get rid of acute beds, the threshold for admission rises, and all too often very sick people are left out in the community, which is not in a position to support them.

Dr. Lewis: Indeed. It is supposed to be the case that people from PICUs are not discharged except to another ward. After intensive care, they should be discharged to an acute ward and then, hopefully, back into society, perhaps via some sort of halfway house. If they do not get better, they should go to a low or medium-secure unit for a long-term stay.

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