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Woman’s five-month wait for nursing home

NHS hospital

An inquiry has been launched after an elderly woman with dementia waited five months in hospital for a nursing home.

Iris Sibley, 89, remained at Bristol Royal Infirmary between August and December last year despite being ready for discharge.

In a joint statement, University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, South Gloucestershire CCG and Bristol Community Health said they were “extremely sorry Mrs Sibley was kept in hospital longer than she needed to be”, the BBC reported.

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The agencies added they “are working together to review her case and understand the reasons for the delay”.

Of 24 homes contacted during Mrs Sibley’s stay in hospital only two either not available or unsuitable for her needs.

The two that were found to be suitable were too far away for her family to visit.

A home was found for Mrs Sibley in December but she has been reassessed and told she no longer qualified for NHS funding.

Mrs Sibley’s son John said the system of placing people in homes was “loaded towards private patients” because they pay more.

He added: “Local authorities will only pay a certain amount of money, whereas [homes] can charge more for a private patient.”

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The author Lee Peart

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