Mental health services under scrutiny after death of patient

5th April 2017

Mental health services under scrutiny after death of patient

The county’s mental health service is under the spotlight once again after a patient suffered fatal injuries while under the care of the Suffolk and Norfolk NHS Foundation Trust.

An inquest has heard how Neil Jewell died at Ipswich Hospital after running out of medication to treat his schizophrenia.

The 42-year-old’s sister, Christine, claimed her brother had been sent away from Hellesdon Hospital Clinic in Norwich despite telling staff he needed Clozapine, a drug which kept his condition stable.

His mental health rapidly deteriorated to the extent he was sectioned under the mental health act and transferred to Wedgwood House at West Suffolk Hospital and then to the Woodlands Unit at Ipswich Hospital, where, despite being placed under constant observation, he died soon after having suffered a cardiac arrest.

The inquest into Mr Jewell’s death is continuing and is expected to record a verdict later this month.

However, the family’s concerns regarding the treatment he received are familiar to Gotelee, which has worked with a number of clients who have been let down in similar circumstances.

Years of chronic under-funding of mental health services and the controversial decision to merge the Suffolk and Norfolk trusts have left the system at breaking point.

Evidence of the devastating state of services nationally was revealed in a leaked government report last February, which found the number of people taking their own lives is soaring, while three-quarters of those with psychiatric conditions are not being helped.

Worryingly, it appears that the same mistakes are being made time and time again, often with patients in crisis are turned away.

Mental health problems can affect anyone in this day and age thanks to the pressure under which many of us live.

How can our personal injury lawyers help you?

If you feel you have been let down by the health system, get in touch. Legal action can provide some compensation to ease the financial pressures you now face, as well as helping you find the answers about what went wrong and why.

Making a claim can also highlight a failing and, as a result, help to ensure no-one else faces similar heartache.

For a confidential chat to discuss your case, call us on 01473 298125 or email We also have offices in Ipswich, Hadleigh, Felixstowe, Woodbridge or Melton.

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