Labour parliamentary candidates issue statement regarding the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Trust

Labour parliamentary candidates in Norfolk and Suffolk have issued a response following publication of an independent audit into the local mental health trust.

The report found that there were more than 8,000 ‘unexpected deaths’ among its patients at the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Trust (NSFT) over the course of just three years. The report also showed that hundreds of patients died on the same day as being discharged.

Last year, in a joint letter, the Government was urged to intervene after 140 doctors signed a letter to its chairman, saying they “lack confidence” in its leadership and calling for “a major change in the operation and performance of the Trust.”

NSFT have also failed four Care Quality Commission inspections.

In a joint statement, Jack Abbott, Jess Asato and Alice Macdonald (Labour Parliamentary Candidates for Ipswich, Waveney and Norwich North, respectively) said:

“This is a heartbreaking report which again exposes the shocking practices that continue at NSFT – our thoughts go out to the families who are still fighting for justice.

“As we have said previously, it is clear that NSFT is not fit for purpose and patients, and their families, are being failed. This latest report is a damning indictment of an institution which is simply incapable of reforming itself.

“This hasn’t happened overnight, this has been years of failure with four failed Care Quality Commission inspections and countless lives lost.

“With the Government’s rapid review into inpatient mental health care now published, it is clear that the Government needs to put patients and our communities first. They need to stop kicking the can down the road on patient safety and reform mental health services so they are fit for patients and their families.

“How many more reports like this do we have to read until NSFT runs out of road? How many more families have to suffer before things change?

“The Government and the local Conservative MPs can’t keep hiding away – it’s time for them to stand up and put an end to this misery.”