Thieves steal £29,000 from QA Hospital

THOUSANDS of pounds worth of jewellery, bikes and cash have been stolen from Queen Alexandra Hospital.

Saturday, 25th February 2017, 6:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 28th February 2017, 12:43 pm
QA Hospital in Cosham Picture: PA

Records uncovered by a Freedom of Information request found 141 thefts were reported to police between January 1, 2014, and May 31, 2016.

Items taken include three charity boxes, jewellery worth £11,735, a phone worth £852, a £900 wheelchair and £505 travel pass.

Dozens of reports of cash and mobile phones being stolen were included in the records, prompting concerns patients were targeted on hospital wards.

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Graham Heaney, chairman of Healthwatch Portsmouth, said: ‘Any theft from a patient is distressing and a problem.

‘People need an opportunity to report these things properly.

‘It’s important that if the people report these to the police they’re making a report to the hospital.’

Not all items stolen had a value recorded but those that do totalled £28,983.

A Hampshire police spokeswoman said the hospital had a PC who acted as a liaison but there is not an officer solely dedicated to the hospital campus.

‘The hospital has its own security team and they have got primary responsibility on the site,’ she said. ‘If we attend any incident then we provide the usual relevant crime prevention advice.’

She added the force was committed to working with the hospital.

A spokeswoman for Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs the QA, said its security teams support the police.

But she revealed that the force had only ever told them of fewer than 30 thefts.

She said: ‘The trust’s security team support the police as best they can in deterring and dealing with crime at Queen Alexandra Hospital, and pass on any CCTV footage that might assist in their investigations.

‘Patients are advised against bringing valuable items into the hospital, however if they do then they’re given the opportunity to surrender them for safe keeping in a ward safe.

‘CCTV cameras are located in all main areas of the hospital and inside the bike sheds.’

Anyone with concerns about the thefts or to report at theft should call 101.