Anti-lockdown protester who posted videos of ‘empty wards’ banned from all hospitals

Andy Wells
·Freelance Writer
·3 min read
Hannah Dean has been banned from visiting hospitals after posting photos of empty wards. (Facebook)
Hannah Dean has been banned from visiting hospitals after posting photos of 'empty wards'. (Facebook)

A woman who has previously been fined for filming what she claimed were “empty wards” during the coronavirus pandemic has been banned from all hospitals.

Hannah Dean, 30, has been met with a barrage of criticism after posting videos and clips from various hospitals as coronavirus cases soared across the UK.

Last month, the anti-lockdown protester has was issued with a £200 fixed-penalty notice for not having a valid reason to leave her home during the lockdown.

Now the mother-of-two faces arrest and possible prosecution if she visits a hospital – unless it is for an emergency, for a booked appointment or if she is a dependent of a patient.

Hannah Dean tried to film patients and staff at the Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth. (Wikipedia)
Hannah Dean tried to film patients and staff at the Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth. (Wikipedia)

Sussex Police said Dean, of Fareham, Hampshire, was issued with the community protection notice after she ignored a warning she was issued on Sunday.

Dean tried to film patients and staff at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth, where 744 people have died with COVID, at around 4.30pm.

Dean’s Facebook account purportedly showed footage taken inside the hospital’s A&E department, while a security guard questions why she is there.

Watch: NHS chief executive describes ‘very serious’ position in hospitals

A Sussex Police spokeswoman said: "On Sunday, Sussex Police issued a community protection warning to a 30-year-old woman from Fareham which prevents her from attending any hospital apart from when she has a prior appointment, is a dependent or there is a medical emergency; and to not encourage, endorse or incite another person to breach COVID restrictions.

"The woman breached the conditions of the community protection warning on the same day of the order being issued and on Monday she was issued with a community protection notice.”

Portsmouth Council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson described Dean’s actions as “a disgrace” and “is so demeaning to the work those people are putting in”.

Around 426 patients were being treated for coronavirus at Queen Alexandra Hospital on 26 January 26, with 47 patients on mechanical ventilation, according to The Mirror.

After filming at Portsmouth’s Queen Alexandra Hospital in January, the hospital’s NHS Trust refuted her claims about wards lying empty.

Read more: What you can and can't do under current lockdown rules

They wrote on Facebook: “We continue to be incredibly busy, and we are very grateful for all our wonderful teams who work so hard, and the local communities who support us.”

Portsmouth Police added: “These actions have caused angst in the community, and have prompted a number of calls to us reporting the posts.”

Dean, who said she always wore masks during her visits, previously denied claiming that COVID was not real but insisted that “not all hospitals are overrun and under pressure”.

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - 2020/11/10: Stay at Home, Protect The NHS, Save Lives sign seen at the closed Odeon cinema in Leicester square. Most shops, restaurants and businesses have closed as the second month-long nationwide Covid 19 lockdown begins in England. (Photo by Vuk Valcic/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
A Stay at Home, Protect The NHS, Save Lives sign seen at the closed Odeon cinema in Leicester Square. (Getty)

She faces a possible fine of £2,500 if she is convicted of breaching the hospital ban, while she has also been ordered not encourage others to break national lockdown restrictions.

A further 707 people who tested positive for coronavirus have died in hospital in England, bringing the total number of confirmed deaths reported in hospitals to 73,619, NHS England said on Wednesday.

Watch: What you can and can't do during England's third national lockdown