Manchester nearest option for Norfolk man’s mentally ill wife

A Norfolk man has spoken of his despair at not being able to get his mentally ill wife admitted to an inpatient ward in Norfolk or Suffolk.

The carer, who declined to be named, said he was having to hide knives and sharp implements around his house after his wife attempted to take her own life last week. He said his wife had requested to be admitted on to a mental health ward voluntarily. However, Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation (NSFT) had no beds and the nearest private bed he could find was in Manchester.

The carer said that his wife had been admitted to the Fermoy Unit in King's Lynn, but the number of inpatient beds in west Norfolk had been reduced to 12.

He added that he had lost work because he had to spend more time looking after his wife and it had been much easier in the past to get her admitted.

'It is putting an enormous strain on the family because we are on high alert all the time. I feel very tired and upset and the most shocking thing is that I felt frightened. They [NSFT] are saying it will be a better service with less doctors and less nurses.'

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