Neglect and Failings at Littlebrook Hospital Lead to Tragic Death of Sevenoaks Man

Neglect and Failings at Littlebrook Hospital Result in Tragic Death of Sevenoaks Man

A tragic death at Littlebrook Hospital in Dartford has been attributed to neglect and gross failings by the hospital’s trust. Jonathan O’Shea, from Sevenoaks, was admitted to the Pinewood Ward on February 24, 2023, after being detained by police under the Mental Health Act. Just a week later, on March 2, 2023, the 37-year-old hanged himself while under the care of the hospital.

After nine hours of deliberation, a jury ruled that Jonathan’s death was “contributed to by neglect due to gross failings by the trust.” The hospital had failed to conduct a timely risk assessment and missed opportunities to communicate with Jonathan’s family.

During the inquest, it was revealed that Jonathan had a long history of mental health issues, including bipolar disorder, depression, and PTSD from a childhood sexual assault. He had attempted to take his own life on several occasions and was prescribed medication for his conditions.

On the day of his death, Jonathan was due to be observed once an hour. However, the health care assistant responsible for monitoring him did not follow protocol when he noticed the bathroom door in Jonathan’s room was closed. He did not enter the room or call out Jonathan’s name, and it wasn’t until 20 minutes later that he discovered Jonathan’s body.

The deputy ward manager on duty that morning also did not have all the necessary information about Jonathan’s mental health history, as it had not been transferred into a risk assessment until the day before his death.

The court heard that improvements have since been made at the hospital, including installing tamper-proof screws on all ward panels and conducting monthly checks on en-suite bathrooms. The hospital has also recruited more staff to ensure proper supervision of patients.

At the end of the inquest, the coroner apologized to Jonathan’s mother, Anne Power, on behalf of the hospital and acknowledged the errors and mistakes that led to her son’s death.

This tragic incident serves as a reminder of the importance of proper care and attention for those struggling with mental health issues. It is crucial for hospitals and healthcare professionals to conduct thorough risk assessments and communicate effectively with patients and their families to ensure their safety and well-being.

The text and images in this article are generated with the assistance of AI and may contain errors. Please verify any important information as we cannot accept any responsibility for incorrect information.

Scroll to Top