The mum of a man who died after treatment in a long-stay mental health hospital says crucial questions remain unanswered.
Melanie Leahy wants a public inquiry into the death of 20-year-old son Matthew at the hospital in 2012.
Melanie and Matthew Leahy
Matthew was cared for by medics from 2011 after being diagnosed with a suspected delusional disorder
He was found hanging at mental health hospital the Linden Centre, in Essex, in November after claiming he had been raped days earlier.
The ombudsman published a report on shortcomings at the North Essex Partnership University (NEP) NHS Foundation Trust.
It found parts of his care were “in line with relevant guidelines”. However, it concluded there were “significant failings in key elements”.
The ombudsman said staff failed to take adequate action over the rape allegation.
Leahy, 54, from Maldon, does not believe her son killed himself. And she says his problems could have been due to a simple vitamin B12 deficiency.
Needle wounds and traces of date-rape drug
She said a post-mortem showed needle wounds to Matthew’s groin, bruises on his ankles and traces of date-rape drug GHB.
Matthew’s case is to be reviewed by NHS Improvement and NHS England before a decision on a public inquiry.
The ombudsman said an earlier NEP probe was “not robust enough”.
Leahy said the struggle for the truth over Matthew’s death “goes on and on and on”. Meanwhile, “people still continue to die”, she said.
40 dead in mental health hospitals
Reports suggest 40 people have died in long-stay mental health hospitals since 2015.
More than 2,000 people with autism and learning disabilities are held in such hospitals.
Leahy’s public inquiry petition had 105,580 supporters when it closed recently.
The Government has apologised for the quality of care “Matthew and others have received” on mental health wards.
NHS Improvement’s review will ensure learning is shared, a statement added.
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