Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Why did Chris Brennan not get efficient care?

Chris Brennan (from family archive)

The coroner says that "neglect" by staff in a psychiatric unit at Bethlem Royal Hospital, South London, contributed to the death of 15-year old Chris Brennan.

The coroner noted under-staffing, which contributed to low morale and poor performance.

It is easy for lawyers to pronounce after hours, days or even weeks of deliberation on medical decisions that are taken in sub-optimal conditions.

Psychiatric services are a neglected part of the NHS, which is underfunded overall.

Here are the bare bones of the situation in the NHS, dug up by Dr Clive Peedell of the NHS Action Party:

Those deductions add up to at least £10 billion a year, about 8% of the notional NHS budget.
This deficit, happening year on year, are bound to have an effect on services, and Jeremy Hunt's idea of stretching an already overstretched 5-day service out to 7 days, without offering extra resources, is simply going to make the situation worse.

Coroners are going to see a lot more cases like poor Chris Brennan, unless and until people start to camp outside local Conservative Party Association HQs.

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