6,000 fewer Mental Health Beds

The Guardian reported that the number of beds in NHS mental health hospitals has fallen by a quarter since 2010.


This is shocking but perhaps of no surprise to us in North Dorset who have lost all our in-patient beds. There were formerly 7 beds at Waterloo Lodge between Shaftesbury and Gillingham and when this closed some beds opened a bit further away at Stewart Lodge in Sherborne. Then these were closed. Our nearest beds are now pretty much an hour’s drive away at Forston Clinic near Dorchester, there are a few in Weymouth and the rest in Bournemouth/Poole. It took me 1 1/2 hours (by car) to get to St Ann’s Hospital, Canford Cliffs, Poole in order to visit a friend in the intensive care ward and this isn’t even considered out of area.

In my opinion this is just not acceptable.

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