England

Southern Health NHS trust report criticised by family of suicide victim

Jo Deering Image copyright Family handout
Image caption Jo Deering took her own life in 2011, months after being sectioned under the Mental Health Act

The family of a woman who killed herself after being discharged from hospital has labelled a report into her death "psycho babble and twaddle".

Jo Deering died in 2011, aged 52, just months after being sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

Under-fire Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust admitted it could have made better decisions about her care.

However, Ms Deering's sister, Maureen Rickman, said the trust's findings "deserved to be binned".

In December, the BBC revealed that the trust, which provides services to about 45,000 people in Hampshire, Dorset, Wiltshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire, had failed to investigate hundreds of unexpected deaths since 2011.

Ms Deering, from New Milton, Hampshire, had paranoid schizophrenia and was discharged from hospital two weeks after being sectioned.

She was sent home where she was the main carer for her 89-year-old mother, who had dementia. Four months later she took her own life.

Her family said the trust should not have allowed her to go home while she was still ill.

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Media captionMaureen Rickman said the trust's report into her sister's death "deserved to be binned"

'Robust actions'

In its 2012 report, the trust said the medical team based at Waterford House who cared for Ms Deering should "be commended for their ongoing efforts to work with Joanna and her whole family in as an inclusive a way as possible, despite significant complications".

Ms Rickman said: "There isn't an investigation here, nothing of the sort. I could have carried out a better investigation myself to be quite frank."

She added: "It deserves to be binned - nobody would have known anything from this at all, there is nothing to take away from this other than a load of psycho babble and twaddle."

In a statement, Dr Lesley Stevens, medical director at the trust, said the report found its "decision-making process about granting leave, and how we communicated this with Jo and her family, could have been better".

"Robust actions to learn from this incident were fully implemented at the time," she added.

She said the trust had provided community support to help Ms Deering with her role as a carer.

"The way we investigate and learn when things go wrong, has changed substantially," she added.

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