Nurses suspended for losing mentally ill patients

Updated: 2013-09-12 20:14

By Li Wenfang (

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A private mental health hospital in Zhuhai, Guangdong province, has suspended two nurses after the pair lost track of seven patients at a train terminal in the nearby city of Dongguan for an entire day.

The seven patients were on their way home after doctors at Zhuhai Baiyun Rehabilitation Hospital approved their discharge, reported Southern Metropolis Daily, which cited an unnamed source at the hospital. But the hospital did not go through the proper procedures for discharging a patient nor did it contact the families of the patients or the police who were responsible for sending a few of the patients to the hospital.

Two nurses escorted the seven patients to the Nancheng train terminal in Dongguan on Tuesday afternoon. At the terminal, one of the nurses went to inquire about the patients' tickets while the other nurse went to buy food.

When they returned to the terminal area, the patients were gone. The nurses reported the disappearances to the hospital but did not call the police, the hospital source said. A security guard finally found the seven patients sitting in the terminal's waiting room, with one grabbing food from a passenger.

A van from the hospital then took the patients back to the hospital on Wednesday afternoon.

The health bureau of Zhuhai received a report into the incident on Wednesday afternoon, the bureau said in a statement issued on Wednesday night. It has begun an investigation into the case and the nurses were then suspended.