Man Missing After Failure Of 'Robust Assessment' From Humber NHS Foundation Trust

Man With Mental Health Issues Goes Missing Two Days After Unescorted Home Release


Kate Rawlings, Press Officer | 0114 274 4238

A man has gone missing from a mental health inpatient unit in Hull after a doctor released him on home leave without carrying out a “robust assessment.”

The man was detained under the Mental Health Act and was transferred from an acute assessment unit, to New Bridges impatient unit in east Hull.

The man went missing two days after a clinician released him for unescorted home leave. During an investigation from the Humber NHS Foundation Trust, it was found that the clinician was not given “significant information” about the patient and the trust declared it as a “serious incident.”

Hilary Gledhill, director of quality and patient safety, said in a report: “The investigation identified the root cause to be the failure to undertake a robust assessment prior to granting leave.”

The report produced to the trust board yesterday revealed that changes have been made around home leave for people detained under the Mental Health Act.

Staff must now review patient risks during handovers and any decision where a “responsible clinician” grants leave to a detained patient must involve a multi-disciplinary team “taking into account the overall clinical picture.”

Sarah Coles, partner and medical law expert at Irwin Mitchell’s Leeds office, said:

Expert Opinion
“Patients’ must be at the centre of care for the NHS to ensure that their safety is a priority. Families and carers should be consulted on decisions to allow people to return to their home to avoid such errors of judgement.

“We handle many mental health medical negligence cases, and alongside our charity work with Leeds Mind, we truly understand the importance of taking mental health seriously.

“The new changes made around home leave will hopefully allow for a more holistic view with the introduction of a multi-disciplinary team reviewing the patient, and this necessity for a higher level of care should ensure that patients are rightly returned home safely after experiencing care and services from the NHS.”

Sarah Coles, Partner