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Police investigate assaults by staff at mental health hospital

PUBLISHED: 15:15 20 September 2019 | UPDATED: 15:15 20 September 2019

Ellingham Hospital near Attleborough.
Byline: Sonya Duncan
Copyright: Archant 2017

Ellingham Hospital near Attleborough. Byline: Sonya Duncan Copyright: Archant 2017

ARCHANT EASTERN DAILY PRESS (01603) 772434

Police are investigating three assaults at a mental health hospital where inspectors are closing wards over staffing fears.

The alleged assaults, at Ellingham Hospital near Attleborough, took place on August 21, 22 and September 1.

The two August incidents were assaults by staff on patients, while the September one is between two patients, a police spokesman confirmed.

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On Wednesday the private hospital said it was closing its two children's wards but its adult ward would stay open.

A spokesman for the Priory Group, which runs the site, said: "We cannot comment on ongoing investigations, but we work very closely with external safeguarding organisations, including the police, and have strict policies around the use of restraint where a patient might endanger themselves or others.

"We reported these incidents ourselves to the police for investigation, in accordance with our policy of transparency and openness. We have also reported the incidents to an external agency which supplies agency workers to us."

Inspectors said the hospital wards were shutting because of a lack of staff, rather than the alleged assaults.

Patients at the two ten-bed wards are now being found other placements.

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