Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 7°C

min temp: 1°C

Search

Southend Hospital has ‘no intention’ of taking part in Airbnb pilot until safeguarding in place

PUBLISHED: 16:23 26 October 2017

Southend Hospital. Picture: EASTNEWS/PETER LAWSON

Southend Hospital. Picture: EASTNEWS/PETER LAWSON

©2006Eastnews/Peter Lawson Eastnews Press Agency 267 Straight Road Colchester, Essex England + 44 (0) 7721 528134 + 44 (0) 1205 575484

Controversial plans for patients in Southend-on-Sea to recover from hospital treatment in private homes have been rejected by an NHS boss.

Dr David Sollis, chief executive of Healthwatch Essex. Picture: HEALTHWATCH ESSEX Dr David Sollis, chief executive of Healthwatch Essex. Picture: HEALTHWATCH ESSEX

Private firm CareRooms is planning the Airbnb-style pilot, which would see around 30 patients staying with local residents with a spare room or annexe while they recuperate.

Hosts need no previous care experience to apply and would be offered up to £50 a night.

However, the hospital linked to the scheme has confirmed it has no immediate plans to take part.

Tom Abell, deputy chief executive of Southend University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said there was “no intention and there never has been for the hospital to support this pilot at this time”.

He added: “We will never compromise the safety and quality of care for patients and we will not support this pilot until the necessary safeguarding and quality arrangements are in place and there has been full engagement and discussion with our local communities on the proposal, this will happen after a period of detailed work and scoping that we have requested.”

Conversely, Dr David Sollis, chief executive of Healthwatch Essex, cautiously welcomed the initiative and likened it to a foster care system or halfway house.

He said: “This whole system is about re-imagining how the public can get involved and be part of the solution.

“We don’t see this as the greatest idea ever but we are backing the pilot.

“The point is a hospital is there to get you well enough to go home. You never stay in a hospital to recover. There’s too many people in hospital trying to recover in bed and we have to get them out.”

He added: “It has an air of desperation but if you went into Dragon’s Den and said this is the plan I reckon they would put their money into it.”

Campaign group Save Southend A&E told the Health Service Journal it “opens a huge can of worms for safeguarding, governance and possible financial and emotional abuse of people at their most vulnerable time”.

Labour MP Barbara Keeley, shadow minister for mental health and social care, labelled the scheme “terrifying” and questioned patient safety.

Supporters say the scheme could help the hospital bed shortage by addressing issues like bed-blocking and readmissions.

SPOILER ALERT: Did Ipswich man James Scharmann whisk a date off to the isle of Fernando’s? Find out here.

A male was taken to hospital after police were called to reports of a group of people fighting in Ipswich.

Will football fan James Scharmann from Ipswich find love on ITV’s ‘Take Me Out’ tonight?

School choirs from across Suffolk are fine-tuning their performances for competition with the Great EACH Choir Off now just a few days away.

An Ipswich based recruitment agency is stepping up to sponsor this year’s Midnight Walk for St Elizabeth Hospice.

Ipswich and Bury St Edmunds are among KFC branches across the country forced to close because of a problem with the company’s supplier.

Police have found a man who went missing after a car ‘flipped three times’ in a crash near Snape Maltings last night.

An independent Suffolk music venue has warned that a “long, sober look” is needed at supporting live music venues across the country, as a new national survey reveals threats to the future of some spaces.

How news savvy have you been this week? Test your friends and family with our quiz.

Three fire crews were called to the scene of a car crash in the Gainsborough area of Ipswich.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24