Anorexic daughter's death 'linked to lack of beds'
- 10 March 2014
- From the section Kent
The mother of an anorexia patient who killed herself on the Tube in London has said a lack of hospital beds in Kent may have contributed to her death.
Lisa Inkin, 21, was being treated in a private hospital in Ealing.
Her mother, Sherry, from Gillingham, said her daughter jumped in front of an Underground train while travelling back to the west London hospital last April.
NHS England said patients with eating disorders may need specialist care if needs cannot be met by local services.
Mrs Inkin said her 5ft 3in (1.6m) daughter's weight had dropped as low as 4st 6lb (28kg) a year before her death.
"She couldn't walk and could barely speak," Mrs Inkin said.
She said her anorexia became apparent in 2010 and she was diagnosed in 2011.
'Haven't fixed my head'
Mrs Inkin said there were insufficient hospital beds in Kent for her to be treated in her home county and she spent a year as a patient in Cygnet Healthcare's Ealing Hospital in west London.
She said her daughter had told her: "They've fixed my body, but they haven't fixed my head."
Ms Inkin was on her way back to the eating disorders unit when she jumped in front of a Tube train at Victoria station.
Mrs Inkin said her daughter had been contacting the unit saying she was feeling suicidal.
"Nobody contacted me until it was too late. I had the opportunity to save her," she said.
"There was no way I would have let her travel back."
'I want justice'
A spokesperson for Cygnet Healthcare's Ealing Hospital said: "We will carry out a full investigation as to the recording of information received about patients and the logging of telephone calls to the unit.
NHS England said patients with eating disorders may need specialist care if their needs could not be met by local services.
"We recognise the need to ensure effective join-up between different health services.
"We will ensure appropriate action is taken to respond to the lessons learnt from this sad case."