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Death review backlog still growing despite NHSE commitment

PUBLISHED

A backlog of thousands of deaths of people with learning disabilities awaiting official review has grown further, despite NHS England committing in spring last year to “address” the buildup. 

Information obtained by HSJ shows the number of incomplete reviews increased slightly between May and November last year – from 3,699 to 3,802.

The “national learning disabilities mortality review” programme – known as LeDeR – was launched in 2016 and is meant to review all deaths of people aged four and over.

Mencap head of policy and public affairs, Dan Scorer, said: “It is unacceptable that thousands of deaths have still not been reviewed despite NHS England announcing further funding to make sure all reviews were carried out quickly and thoroughly. These latest figures show that little progress has been made; the programme is still failing to address outstanding reviews as well as keep pace with incoming referrals."

“Behind these figures are families whose loved ones’ deaths may have been potentially avoidable and they have a right to know that health and care services are learning and acting on LeDeR reviews’ recommendations.”

Read full story (paywalled)

Source: HSJ, 8 January 2020

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