Inquest didn’t conclude that staff acted wrongly

ANYONE who was present throughout the inquest into the tragic death of John Blair last week will recognise the bravery and dignity shown by his family, to whom we continue to express our heartfelt condolences. Those who attended will also appreciate the professionalism and compassion shown by the staff from the Woodlands unit; a number of whom cared for Mr Blair.

At the inquest there was no evidence provided to indicate that the level of observation (every 15 minutes) was incorrect. Sussex Partnership staff who were questioned were able to explain their clinical judgements based upon the evidence they had available to them at the time.

Your report last week may have left readers with the impression that we failed John Blair when he was most in need of help. The Coroner’s inquest did not reach this conclusion.

We explored this tragic incident and we shared our findings, and the improvements we have made, with the inquest.

Any death is always devastating for the families as well as the staff involved, and we owe it to the memory of the person who died to learn from what happened and continually improve

JOHN ROSSER

service director

Working Age Mental Health Services

Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust