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Mental health patients in UK to wait 3 years before discharge

Mental health patients across the UK are waiting three years to be released from hospital.

It has been reported at least 91 patients across the UK are waiting more than three years to be discharged.

According to data obtained under freedom of information laws, seven patients were stuck in mental units for more than two years than deemed necessary.

Figures covering 2016/17 show 320 patients had to wait at least 100 days before being discharged.

Northern Ireland, England, Scotland each had at least one case where a patient had to wait more than three years before they were discharged - due to lack of suitable accommodation.

Dr Sridevi Kalidindi, of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, reported to the BBC that disagreements between different health bodies over funding of a patient's placement could lead to delays.

She stated: "Where those relationships are not quite right, where everyone feels under a lot of pressure in terms of their own finances that's often where people can disagree."

Dr Kalidindi also said a cap on benefits made it harder for providers to meet demand.

"We know around the country of supported housing placements closing down as a result of this.

"We also know of supported housing that was going to come online being shelved by large housing providers who are in this space."

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