A Portuguese man evicted from a National Health Service hospital after two years has denied that he is a bed blocker. Sixty three year old Adriano Guedes says that far from refusing to leave James Paget Hospital in Norfolk, he was actually forced to stay.

Mr Guedes was first admitted to the hospital after he suffered a stroke in August 2014. But, hospital bosses said he overstayed his welcome, and that they were forced to go to court to obtain an order to remove him.

However, Mr Guedes says his version of events is very different to that of the hospital’s. The Portuguese national says he was the one who asked if he could leave on several occasions, to a wheelchair friendly address, or a specialist clinic in London.

Tried to leave

He said: “I didn’t want to stay, and they forced me to stay. It’s very bad to occupy a place which should be used by someone in need, but I didn’t cause the situation. On the contrary, I tried to get out of there.” However, the hospital, which is close to the seaside resort of Great Yarmouth, says that he was offered suitable accommodation.

Health chiefs say that the patient refused all offers of appropriate accommodation which had been organised by council staff and social care officials, even though he was fit to leave hospital. As a last resort, they say, they applied for a court order so they could remove him, to allow the bed to be used by other patients.

Mr Guedes has now moved into an apartment provided by the council in Suffolk. According to latest statistics, a hospital bed in the NHS costs around £306 every day to operate, meaning that Mr Guedes hospital stay would have cost the British taxpayer some £223,000. The move comes at a time NHS hospitals are under increasing pressure as a result of winter weather.