Treatment delays lead to deaths

Abuse and delays in treatment led to the deaths of one in eight people with learning difficulties an NHS England review has found.

Between July 1, 2016 and November 30, 2017, a total of 1,311 deaths were notified to the Learning Disability Mortality Review programme.

The review indicated that in 13 per cent of the 103 completed reviews of deaths of people with learning disabilities, the person’s health had been adversely affected by the care provider.

Delays in care or treatment, gaps in service provision, organisational dysfunction, or neglect or abuse were recognised as contributing to the deaths of 13 people according to the Learning Disability Mortality Review.

After the “preventable” death of Oxford teenager Connor Sparrowhawk in 2013, and the death of Teresa Colvin, from Hampshire, Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust admitted breaching health and safety law and was fined £2million.

Connor, known as Laughing Boy, was 18 years old when he suffered an epileptic seizure and drowned in a bath after being left alone at Southern Health’s Slade House, Headington.

A family statement released on the #JusticeforLB campaign website after the verdict at Oxford Crown Court in March said: “Families should not have to find for answers and accountability.”

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