Temporary shutdown for Stockton mental health unit
A mental health unit has been temporarily closed after a drive to cut the length of time older people spend in hospital.
Staff at Stockton's Lustrum Vale inpatient unit have increased the speed of assessments and treatment so patients can return home more quickly.
Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust said as a result there had been a major drop in bed occupancy.
It said the situation would be reviewed by October.
No decision would be made about the future of the unit before a public consultation is held, it said.
In the past three months, there have been less than five patients from Stockton on the 22-bed ward at any one time.
While the unit is closed, patients will go to its service at Roseberry Park, Middlesbrough.