Mental Health Reforms: The Mother's Story - 'Supervision might have saved my son'
Tuesday 08 December 1998
Mr Olley, 26, leapt from the 10th floor of Lister Hospital, Stevenage, Hertfordshire, in April. In an earlier fall, from the sixth floor of a car park, he suffered severe facial wounds. A few minutes before his death Mrs Olley heard his social worker ask a nurse at the Lister, where he was an in-patient, to keep a close eye on him. He had become furious during a meeting with his parents because they had failed to bring his guitar. The Lister has been under scrutiny recently because seven in- patients killed themselves in a six-month period up to last summer.
Mrs Olley accepts there was a high risk her son would commit suicide. One of the most stable periods in his four years of illness was when he was transferred to a secure unit at Fairfields Hospital, near Letchworth, Bedfordshire. He could only leave the ward if accompanied by a staffer.
During his final stay at the Lister he would leave unaccompanied to visit a friend in town. Mrs Olley said: ''We can't go back to Victorian asylums. But there are people who need to be in an institution-type atmosphere for some periods.''
A review was carried out into seven suicides at the Lister. It found problems with supervision and staff shortages and it recommended improvements. But North Herts NHS Trust, which runs the Lister, defended its supervision of patients.
Chief executive Heather Lawrence has said: "Each patient is being assessed. Either they are being observed the whole time, which can be distressing for them, so we try to avoid it, or they are monitored every 15 minutes or, if they are near discharge, they have a lot more freedom."
Kirstie Allsopp has waded into the female fertility debate again
...and it wasn't caused by an asteroid crash, as first thought
- 1 Snoop Dogg and Jared Leto buy a stake in Reddit as A-list invests $50m
- 2 Prince held a Facebook Q&A and this is the only question he answered...
- 3 35,000 walrus gather on north-west Alaska beach 'for a rest'
- 4 Brad Pitt, on the moment he completely lost his temper with Clint Eastwood's son
- 5 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
Stella McCartney apologises over controversial 'very ill' model picture on Instagram
Snoop Dogg and Jared Leto buy a stake in Reddit as A-list invests $50m
Prince held a Facebook Q&A and this is the only question he answered...
Brad Pitt, on the moment he completely lost his temper with Clint Eastwood's son
Cheryl Cole named 'the most dangerous celebrity' on the internet
Former Tory donor Arron Banks ups his Ukip donation to £1million following William Hague 'nobody' comment
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
The Osborne Ultimatum: Chancellor’s benefits freeze bombshell will affect ten million households
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so
- < Previous
- Next >
£25000 - £30000 Per Annum Excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd:...
£26000 - £28000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: We are currently r...
£110 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Reading: English Teacher required for ...
£55000 - £60000 Per Annum plus excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions...