Anna Fields inquest: Staff unaware patient had left ward

Anna Fields Image copyright Family issue
Image caption Anna Fields had sent a text message to her family saying: "I love you all very much. Sorry"

Mental health staff at a psychiatric ward in Lincoln were unaware a patient had absconded for nearly three hours, an inquest has heard.

Anna Fields, 32, from Lincoln, was later found unresponsive at her home and died in hospital two days later.

Ms Fields had been detained under the Mental Health Act at the Peter Hodgkinson Centre, in April 2014.

Richard Marshall, assistant coroner, said Ms Fields left the unit during a smoking break.

The inquest heard the patient had a long history of mental health problems including self-harm and overdose.

Shortly after midday on 18 April 2014 she sent a group text to her family saying: "I love you all very much. Sorry."

It was only later when her father arrived at the hospital that staff realised she was missing and a search began.

Ms Fields was found at her home in Newark Road by a police officer.

The inquest at Lincoln Cathedral Centre also heard evidence from a toxicologist who carried out tests after her death.

Dr Steph Barber told the inquest that despite evidence of multiple substances in Ms Fields' blood, there was no evidence to suggest she had taken an overdose.

The inquest continues.

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