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Women died after ‘gross failings’ by scandal hit mental health trust

A young woman died following “gross failings” and “neglect” by a mental health hospital in Essex which is also facing a major independent inquiry into patient deaths.

Bethany Lilley, 28, died on 16 January whilst she was an inpatient at Basildon Mental Health unit, run by Essex Partnership University Hospitals.

The inquest examined the circumstances of her death this week and concluded that her death was contributed by neglect due to a “plethora of failings by Essex University Partnership Trust”.

Following the three week inquest, heard before coroner Sean Horstead, a jury found “neglect” contributed to Ms Lilley’s death and identified “gross failures” on behalf of the trust.

The jury identified a number of failings in her care including evidence that cocaine had made its way onto a ward where she was an inpatient.

There was evidence of “very considerable problems in the record-keeping at EPUT psychiatric units.”

It was also concluded staff failed to carry out a risk assessment of Ms Lilley in the days leading up to her death, and failed to carry out observations.

Ms Lilley’s death is one of a series of patients who have died under the care of mental health services in Essex, which have been brought into the light following the campaigning of bereaved families.

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Source: The Independent, 19 March 2022


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