A matter of public interest

I was at a meeting earlier this week where there was mention of three learning disabled people who had died unexpectedly all with (apparently) good care packages. They all choked. Astonishing.

My brain keeps bouncing from the investigation report into LB’s death and the response of the Trust. Let’s just go back to the Board minutes* of 29.7.13 (p.81).

board minutes

Again. Astonishing. Astonishing that the Trust state that the postmortem indicates LB died of natural causes when it never did. It was undetermined and then established with additional tests. Most definitely not natural causes. And beyond astonishing that early investigations indicate that all appropriate systems and processes were in place. What the hell were these early investigators looking at?

That the Trust were so quick to try and badge this as a ‘natural causes’ jobby and that this probably ain’t unusual practice when it comes to learning disabled people dying unexpectedly, makes it hugely important that the report is made public. The apparent acceptance that a fit young 18 year old man could die in such circumstances underlines how being labelled as ‘learning disabled’ removes any of the considerations/human rights that the rest of us are accorded. We know the terrible statistics around the early deaths of learning disabled people. Less clear are the ways in which the actions of NHS and private providers contribute to, facilitate, cause and cover up these deaths. This is a matter of public interest.

The report must be made public.

*Just ignoring ‘the user’ shite for now.

16 thoughts on “A matter of public interest

  1. Looks like same shade of whitewash was used again! If truth is never found then lessons will never be learned!
    My son was said to have taken his own life based on “the balance of probabilities”
    …..but no weapon was ever produced! AND Nobody asked about this! They will be telling you next Root Cause Analysis was used!
    I agree! Publish the Report ….maybe a petition could be set up?

  2. I agree Sara. What can be done legally and how could we help you? It makes me angry how families have to live with cover ups. Power lies with those who can afford to block individuals. Angela xxx

    • Agree totally. As soon as someone works out what we can do to help, tell us on the blog and we can all try and do our bit. But some help may be more useful than others – does anyone know how to get in touch with a good investigative journalist, for example? (And would you be willing to take this route?)

  3. Collusion – illegal – secretive – deceiving – defrauding you of your legal rights.
    Life is cheap for a person with LD their lives have little value so if they die it is not important.
    Justice and Recognition for LB – shoulder to shoulder sister…the voice of LB and his devoted Mum will be heard ……we her sisters will make sure of that…… Publish the report they can’t hurt you any more than you hurt now…… I would certainly publish – I wouldn’t allow them to manipulate me…… #shameonthem…..

  4. Publish the report- they have had too much control of the puppet strings already!!!! – How flipping dare they??? LB’s memory is worth exposing these assholes for and why should they decide how his story ends . They already allowed his life to end way before it’s time . Enough already !

  5. Yes it must. It is not a question of ‘learning lessons’. It is a question of the institutions facing up to their responsibilities and failures. Not ‘lessons’. Failures. In this case, a complete, utter, abject and inexcusable failure.

    NHS institutions were put on notice of their liabilities over half a decade ago.

    Click to access Corporate%20Manslaughter%20and%20Homicide.pdf

    I hope the police and the CPS will be taking a close interest.

  6. Thank you all for your overwhelming support… Thanks for the link, too, Kay. Very useful. The final version of the report is being circulated to the relevant people (including us, hopefully, though this isn’t certain) on Tuesday. Then we will fight for its publication. Only right as you all underline. xxx

  7. Hi Sara, you can be very sure that there will be no shortage of support if it comes to a fight for publication!! 2nd bullet point of the summary of the act, page 3, seems particularly relevant I would think. They haven’t got a leg to stand on. Love Jenny xx

      • A death from epilepsy – or a death from choking come to that – is rather too easily chalked up to “natural causes”. My daughter, unfortunately, is at risk from both – but getting others to grasp that can sometimes be quite terrifying. The efforts to de-stigmatise epilepsy and be less repressive about “risk” is a good thing – but the question here is not whether it was “natural” – but HOW COULD THEY LET IT HAPPEN? What on earth were their priorities? What lessons might be learned, and how long for? The lesson most of us are trying not to learn is that their lives have less value and the systems are not in place to care for them properly.

        Our children become adults at 18, and we as parents become irrelevant. None of us want to infantalise them. But as parents we care, and if we are to surrender that, others need to offer equivalent care or horrible, unimaginable things like this will continue to be shrugged off.

  8. We need. to remind ourselves that every time the ‘system’ is blamed for such tragedies, there is a paid officer responsible & accountable for the ‘system’, who should be called to explain why it all happened under their watch!

  9. David Prior, the chair of the CQC, seems to have noticed that one or two things are amiss. Although, unless very rigorous monitoring is put in place first, I fail to see how profit-driven private providers are going to improve matters. Commercial confidentiality, on top of staff & patient confidentiality (yeah, the order is deliberate) does not appear to have the makings of a transparently accountable system in it.


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