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Last Updated: Tuesday, 3 January 2006, 14:22 GMT
Patient finds vagrant in ward bed
Hospital ward -generic
Mr Dagger said the homeless man was in the next bed
A London hospital has apologised to a patient after he returned to his room to find a vagrant asleep in a bed.

Brian Dagger, 64, was in the Central Middlesex Hospital after breaking his back in a scooter accident.

After leaving his bed briefly, he returned to his room to find a homeless man asleep in one of the beds.

A spokesman for North West London Hospitals NHS Trust said it was "very sorry" for any distress caused and said it would investigate.

'Covered in mess'

The incident happened in October, after Mr Dagger was admitted to the hospital, which is in Acton.

He told the Sun newspaper he had returned to the ward to find the homeless man asleep in the bed next to him. The patient whose bed the man was sleeping in has not been named.

He told the Sun newspaper: "The tramp was in his 50s and when they moved him the back of his jacket was covered in mess.

"There's no excuse for such terrible standards.

"What is more concerning is the security on the ward. Anyone can walk in and out unchallenged."

Nick Hulme, director of operations at North West London Hospitals NHS Trust, said he was "very sorry" Mr Dagger was unhappy with conditions at the hospital.

"I would be pleased to discuss these concerns so I can investigate them properly and I wrote to him last month to invite him to a meeting," he said.

"Mr Dagger may be pleased to know that we have reduced the number of agency nurses at the hospital and now have more permanent staff working on the wards," Mr Hulme said.

The building, which was built in 1901, is due to be replaced with an 85m new hospital in March which will have "spacious and more secure patient areas, and a high quality environment", Mr Hulme said.

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