NHS Must Improve Following Death of Teenager with Learning Disabilities

 9th Jun 2016

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has recently warned an NHS trust to improve their services after reports a teenager living with learning disabilities had died from neglect.

Eighteen year old Connor Sparrowhawk, who was living with autism, died from drowning whilst staying in Oxfordshire care home ‘Slade House’ in 2013.

After an investigation was conducted; it was deemed his death was partly attributed to the inadequate care from NHS staff at the supported living facility in Headington.

The teenager endured a sudden epileptic shock endured whilst in one of the home’s baths; however, this was originally thought to be a result of natural causes.

Off the back of a October 2015 investigation, inspectors identified that the death could have been prevented if Southern Health NHS staff had been more vigilant in their support.

As a result of this controversy, the learning disability unit integrated within Slade House has now closed and their services are no longer being provided.

The CQC has advised the Southern health NHS Foundation Trust to learn from past mistakes (something which it has previously failed to do) as well as ‘urgently improve’ their services.

This follows another previous investigation into commissioned by the NHS which found the trust had a poor history of learning from its past mistakes.

It stated Southern Health NHS Staff were not proactive in reducing the risks associated with the home’s environment and did not adequately follow up patient care incidents.

Connor’s death highlights the need for stringent quality monitoring in all health and social care organisations, especially those supporting people suffering with mental health conditions and learning disabilities.

Encompass is a specialist provider of professional care and support services, helping to improve the lives of people living with an enduring mental health condition or learning disability.

All our homes are monitored and approved by the CQC in order to ensure the ongoing high quality of care provided by our staff.

Find out how our team can help you or a loved one by clicking here.

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