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Investigation Launched Into Abuse at Teen Psychiatric Unit (12 October 2011)

Date: 12/10/2011
Duncan Lewis, Legal News Solicitors, Investigation Launched Into Abuse at Teen Psychiatric Unit

An investigation has been launched following allegations of the abuse of teenagers at a psychiatric unit. Seven staff members at the Roycroft Unit at St. Nicholas Hospital in Newcastle-upon-Tyne have been suspended over claims of a “culture of abuse”. Carers at the medium-secure clinic have been accused of mocking the mentally disordered offenders and youngsters residing there.

A spokesperson for Northumberland Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust stated that the trust was conducting an investigation into alleged inappropriate behaviour at the clinic. He maintained that the priority of the trust is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of their patients. In line with the trust’s zero tolerance policy, immediate action was taken to initially suspend two members of staff. A further five staff members were later suspended following the ongoing investigations. The trust claims that despite the suspensions, appropriate staffing levels were being maintained on the unit.

The spokesperson told of the active and ongoing campaign that encourages and emphasises the importance of trusted employees and service users reporting any concerns. He added that all issues reported are dealt with promptly and robustly. The spokesperson claimed that all of the appropriate safeguarding processes had been implemented and all relevant agencies informed.

Duncan Lewis’ highly specialised mental health law department is one of the UK’s largest providers of mental health legal aid services. The team of expert mental health law solicitors are able to assist clients suffering from mental health problems who are being compulsorily detained under the Mental Health Act 1983.

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