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Hospital denies £5 a day food spend
7:00am Monday 21st October 2013 in News
BASILDON Hospital spends as little as £5 feeding each patient per day, according to new figures.
The findings, published by the Health and Social Care Information Centre, revealed the hospital in Nethermayne spends just £5.02 for each patient’s meals per day.
The figure is nearly half the national average of £9.87, half of that spent by Southend Hospital which forks out £10.23 per patient, and a third of that spent by Colchester Hospital which pays out a whopping £14.03 for every patient’s meals.
However Basildon Hospital claims it was not approached to provide information to the centre and has fiercely disputed the seemingly low statistic.
The hospital says, based on its own recent research, it spends £7.15 a day on each patient’s meals and claim its food goes down well with patients.
A hospital trust spokeswoman said: “The trust spends £7.15 per day per patient on food and beverages.
“Meals arrive on site pre-plated and sealed and are steam cooked in our kitchens.
“We strictly follow all guidelines from the British Dietetic Association which govern nutritional standards and menus are agreed with our own dietitians.
“We carry out monthly patient satisfaction surveys, asking patients to rate the quality of food as excellent/very good/good/fair/poor.
“In the last survey, 14 per cent of patients said they thought the quality of food was excellent, 59 per cent said very good and 27 per cent said good.”
However, Clifford Webster, 62, of Spark Bridge, Laindon – who spent two months at Basildon Hospital last year after suffering breathing difficulties – said the food was so bad he was unable to eat it.
He said: “The food was absolutely appaling.
“My wife came to see me every day and she was buying me food from the hospital canteen, which is completely different.
“The food was just totally tasteless. I was later transferred to the London Chest Hospital and the food there was far superior, it was well made and well prepared.”
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