3 Jan 2017

Hospital to repeat moves to block drunk friends and relatives

7:10 am on 3 January 2017

Drunk friends and relatives of patients were blocked from entering Wellington Hospital's emergency department on New Year's Eve.

In order to stop intoxicated people from entering the clinical area, those who appeared to be drunk were breath tested, using the same levels as the police.

People breathing above 400 micrograms of alcohol were denied access at reception.

Dr Paul Quigley at Wellington Hospital ED USE WITH RUSSELL BROWNS PODCAST

Photo: RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

A spokesperson said it was a success, with staff giving positive feedback, as well as patients and those who were breathalysed.

Dr Paul Quigley, the hospital's emergency department specialist, told media the initiative was so successful the hospital was likely to do it again in the future.

He said about 25 grossly intoxicated people turned up at the Wellington Hospital emergency department every weekend.

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