Damages for hospital fall

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A mental patient who tried to kill herself by jumping from the eighth floor of a hospital is to receive pounds 145,000 compensation for the crippling injuries she suffered. Lawyers for Maxine Griggs, 38, of Letchworth, Hertfordshire, accused North Hertfordshire NHS Trust of negligence in allegedly failing to keep her under proper supervision.

Christopher Gardner QC, for Mrs Griggs, told Mr Justice Eady, a High Court judge, that she heard voices urging her to kill others or harm herself. In April 1992, while an involuntary patient at Lister Hospital, Stevenage, she was allowed out of her ward under a "good-behaviour contract"to buy a newspaper. Instead, she jumped from the eighth floor; her injuries included spinal, ankle and shoulder fractures.