A leading consultant has dismissed what he has described as a 'scare story' about families leaving elderly relatives in hospitals.
Des O'Neill from Tallaght Hospital in Dublin says the claims in today's Irish Times are being blown out of proportion.
Under the Fair Deal scheme, a patient's assets are used to fund a nursing home place.
The paper says it has seen HSE emails where people are accused of leaving OAPs in hospital beds, rather than sending them to a nursing home - to protect their inheritance.
However, Consultant Geriatrician Des O'Neill says that hardly never happens.
Dr O'Neill said: "This almost certainly has elements of a scare story about it, I mean this is an absolute minority as we see it.
"But what's intersting is this headline in a way, because unless there has been a ward of court or power of attorney, they don't actually have a specific say-so over a person's assets."