Kept in the Dark: Daily Gazette: ‘inquest… to be adjourned after finding out the professions of two NHS workers were not as they had understood.”

The Daily Gazette and Essex County Standard reports:

AN inquest into the sudden death of a teenager has been adjourned as new information has come to light.

Harriet Philo-Powell died suddenly aged 18 at the end of February.

Miss Philo-Powell’s family, who live in Bulmer, near Halstead, asked for the inquest into her death to be adjourned after finding out the professions of two NHS workers were not as they had understood.

Gordon Powell, Harriet’s father, said: “Some of the information we only received at the beginning of the week, we were not aware of the positions of two of the key members of a psychiatric team at West Suffolk Hospital.

“The information came as a great shock to us and it would be useful to have a meeting with the Trust.”

The Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Trust has not yet had a meeting with the family to review a serious incident report which they received last month.

Nothing stigmatises people with mental health problems more than denying them help by highly trained, experienced and qualified professionals. Would this be acceptable in cancer care or paediatrics?

Why should highly trained staff be denied the opportunity to take pride in the their professions?

Why shouldn’t service users and carers know who they are being treated by?

The parents had believed psychiatrists had been treating Miss Powell at the hospital before her death.

A representative from the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Trust was present at the inquest.

Doctors at NSFT have had to fight all the way to the Chair, Gary Page, to retain their professional standing on their name badges.

What does ‘Mental Health Practitioner’ mean?

We regularly hear from people who think they are being treated by a Consultant Psychiatrist with Membership of the Royal College of Psychiatrists when they are not.

Some of the Integrated Delivery Teams (IDTs) in Suffolk do not contain a single psychiatric nurse. Many psychiatrist posts are unfilled with appointments cancelled until further notice.

Caroline Beasley-Murray, senior coroner, said it was a pity the Trust had not had a meeting with the parents prior to the inquest.

Yet again, NSFT fails to communicate properly with a bereaved family.

It was adjourned until June 27, giving time for the serious incident report to be perfected and a meeting between the family and Trust to take place. Miss Powell was a talented sailor, as well as being an accomplished artist.

She was a student at Colchester Sixth Form College where she was studying Art, Art History and English.

Another tragic waste of a young life. Our thoughts are with her family and friends.

How many more funerals?

We must continue the fight for decent mental health services in Norfolk and Suffolk.

Click on the image below to read the article in full on the Daily Gazette and Essex County Standard website:

Daily Gazette Inquest into teenagers death adjourned as new information comes to light

9 thoughts on “Kept in the Dark: Daily Gazette: ‘inquest… to be adjourned after finding out the professions of two NHS workers were not as they had understood.””

  1. We now have the term ” Lead Professional ” which has replaced that of Care Coordinator. The Care Programme Approach( CPA ) was brought in in the early 1990s to prevent people from slipping through the net. It should be a guideline to good practice rather than a bureaucratic exercise. It is very difficult for a Care Coordinator or Lead Professional to follow CPA principles when they have such large caseloads. It takes a lot of time to coordinate care effectively, to involve the service-user and relatives, as well as other agencies who might be involved. Constant changes of personnel do not help. The therapeutic relationship of trust does more to protect people than any risk assessment form. The Radical Redesign has set us back decades.

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