A man was allegedly locked in a hospital cupboard in Nicosia by a nurse this week for seven hours, reports said on Thursday, with the state health services organisation (Okypy) saying they would show zero tolerance to such matters.

Speaking on Ant1 TV, the wife of the man, Maro Georgiou, said that her husband had gone to Nicosia General for a hip surgery on Monday. The next day, she added, a nurse came and told her husband that he needed a blood transfusion.

When asking the nurse why the transfusion was needed, the nurse told him that it was doctor’s orders. Accepting this premise, the man consented to being given blood.

While receiving blood, the man complained that it was dripping off his hand and onto the bed, staining it, so he called the nurse for help.

“As soon as the nurse arrived, he [the nurse] pulled out the intravenous line and attempted to move the bed,” Georgiou said.

The patient then asked where he was being taken, to have the nurse say that he is being taken to intensive care for monitoring.

The nurse instead took the man to storage cupboard and left him there for seven hours from 11.30pm until 6am, just before the shift change.

Speaking about the incident, Okypy spokesman Pambos Charilaou said that a complaint has been filed, and that this is a serious incident.

He added that the issue will be investigated, and that the nurse has been suspended temporarily from patient care.

If the claim is verified, he said, there will be other processes followed based on the code of conduct of the organisation.