There are grave concerns for a mental health patient who disappeared while in the care of Palmerston North Hospital.
Chelsea Brunton was last seen on Saturday, when she was allowed to leave the hospital premises to smoke a cigarette.
The 21-year-old's family told 1 NEWS she had been under 24-hour supervision in the hospital's mental health ward up until the day before she went missing.
Ms Brunton's uncle, Phil Fisher, says despite Chelsea no longer needing 24 hour surveillance on the day of her disappearance he was "struggling to understand" why she was able to leave the hospital grounds unsupervised.
"I find it odd given her mental health state," said Mr Fisher.
The Mid Central District Health Board says it is working with police to "assist finding Chelsea and are doing all we can to facilitate her safe return".
Police are appealing to the public for sightings of Ms Brunton and say they're working with her family and the DHB to find her.
Ms Brunton has a three-year-old daughter and her disappearance is being described as out of character.
Police are asking anyone with information to contact them (06 351 3600).
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