Sunday 17 December 2017
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Southern Health NHS trust deaths response criticised

The mother of a man whose death sparked an inquiry into a health trust has criticised a lack of response after it was revealed it failed to investigate hundreds of deaths.

Sara Ryan said the response following the report into Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust had been "like tumbleweed".

Her son Connor Sparrowhawk drowned in a bath while in Southern Health's care.

The trust has apologised for failings and said systems had improved.

Rob Greig, the government's former national director for learning disabilities, has also described the response as "profoundly disappointing".

"The life of people with learning disabilities is not a sufficient priority for the government," he said.

Southern Health provides services to about 45,000 people across Hampshire, Dorset, Wiltshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire.

A report by audit firm Mazars, published in December, said the deaths of hundreds of mental health and learning-disability patients over four years were not properly examined, and blamed a "failure of leadership".