When LB was in the unit there was a patient (one of five) who didn’t look brilliant. I only saw him/her dressed once. Most of the time we visited s/he was in a dressing gown and didn’t seem to go out much. S/he had a bit of a wry sense of humour and chatted away, like really chatted away. A bit like LB really.
I read months later that a patient died of cancer days after LB died. Eh? What? How could someone so close to the end of their life through terminal illness be in a secure unit days before their death [howl]. And why was this discussed in a document reflecting on the additional distress her/his death caused staff. No apparent consideration for other patients. Again.
In the 107 days LB was in the unit, we saw how the inmates (let’s not dress it up) connected with each other and had a sometimes uneasy, occasionally hilarious but a recognisably collective sense of being there. How the three living (remaining?) patients have dealt with the trauma they experienced during that hot, hot July, without specialist support (no post-Winterbourne View/JIP related, apparently gold plated, support here) is unimaginable. Were they able to attend this second funeral if nothing else?
I heard this week, through another dicky bird (the scourge of the candour duty obliterators) that some staff had been concerned about the wellbeing of this patient over some time. [Good]. These concerns were not really listened to. Allegedly, through the whistle blowing process, Sloven have only recently started an internal (that is, chocolate teapot jobby like) investigation into this person’s death. Over a year and a half later.
Wow. If nothing else, the shite that continues to become visible is, er, consistently, shite.
One of our campaign aims was a review into the deaths of all patients in Sloven learning disability and mental health provision since 2011. This was commissioned by David Nicholson last spring.The Death Review got off to a shaky start given nonsense about having Sloven and local CCGs on the expert advisory panel. It looks like this has been resolved but here’s hoping the review gets to the heart of the rotten core. It isn’t about number of deaths but about the response to these deaths. Not only are people denied humanity in life but also in death.
Chilling and unforgivable.