HC Deb 22 November 1977 vol 939 cc659-60W
37. Mr. Kilroy-Silk

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what further action he proposes to take to expedite the transfer of patients from the special hospitals to National Health Service psychiatric hospitals.

Mr. Moyle

the decision to admit a patient to a particular hospital is one for the appropriate health authority to take, as the manager of the hospital, in the light of the patient's needs, the facilities available and other relevant circumstances. My Department will continue to review all the cases with the health authorities and to press the needs of the patients in question. As I explained in my letter of 26th October to my hon. Friend, I see no quick solution to the problem. Where the initial reluctance to accept a patient from a special hospital stems from staff opposition the health authority needs to discuss the problem with those concerned to remove any misunderstandings or prejudices and to consider any representations from or on behalf of the staff about safeguards for the staff and the adequacy of the facilities available. Where the difficulty stems from differences of clinical opinion or judgment steps have to be taken to try to resolve the differences. These are matters which are often not capable of speedy resolution.