Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Families of teens bereft by mental health confidence welcome review but want investigation

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Christie Harnett, 17, Nadia Sharif, 17, and Emily Moore, 18, died within eight months at NHS Trust facilities in the Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys.

An independent inquiry into the deaths, published November 2022, 120 errors found in her care.

The report reinforced calls for a public inquiry into the trust.

On Monday January 23, the Government announced that safety risks and omissions in mental health facilities across England are being investigated as part of a “rapid review” of patient care.

It is not a new investigation into any particular case.

Speaking to Latest Page News Tyne Tees, David Moore, Emily Moore’s father, said he only found out about the review on social media after the announcement.

He and the other families see the review as “a start” but should not replace the prospect of a public inquiry into the Tees, Esk and Wear Trust.

“I applaud a swift mental health response because it needs to be done, but we also really need a public inquiry,” Mr Moore said.

“It will bring up all the answers. People will come forward to explain what happened inside the trust.

“It’s common sense. It has to be done.”

The government said the quick review does not preclude a public scrutiny of the trust.

A number of charities and mental health organizations have welcomed the review, calling it a “positive step” by the government.

Health Secretary Maria Caulfield said in a written statement: “This review is an essential first step in improving safety in inpatient mental health facilities.

“It will focus on what data and evidence is currently available to health services, including information provided by patients and families, and how we can use that data and evidence more effectively to identify patient safety risks and treatment errors.”

Ms Caulfield added: “NHS England has also put in place a three-year quality improvement program aimed at tackling the root causes of unsafe, poor quality inpatient care in the areas of mental health, learning disabilities and autism.”

After announcing the review, the Trust said it apologized unreservedly for the unacceptable mistakes made in the care of Christie, Nadia and Emily and was already doing everything in its power “to ensure these mistakes can never be repeated”.

They welcome the national rapid assessment and will contribute their findings.

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