Injuries sustained from second suicide attempt

Posted by Gemma Osgood on

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Mr X, a previously fit and well man suddenly became mentally unwell and voiced suicidal thoughts. One evening Mr X jumped from a 3rd floor car park in a suicide attempt. As a result, he sustained serious injuries including spinal fractures, a pelvic fracture and fractures to both feet.

After admission to hospital and treatment for his injuries Mr X was admitted to his local mental health hospital. There were concerns for his safety as he still voiced suicidal intentions. During his hospital admission he made regular references to wanting to end his life but despite this he was allowed on leave from the hospital. His family informed hospital staff that he was talking about ending his life and that they were concerned about his safety. 

His family requested that he should not be allowed out of the hospital on leave. However, despite this and due to a failure to appropriately risk assess Mr X, he was given a further short period of leave and left the hospital. He did not return to the hospital as agreed and his absence was reported to the police.

It was found that during this time he jumped from the 7th floor of a building.  He survived the fall but sustained serious injuries including multiple spinal fractures plus rib, pelvic and femoral fractures. Fortunately Mr X recovered from his injuries but was medically retired from his job. He still suffers from chronic pain. His mental health has now stabilised, but he is unlikely to work again in the future.

Mr X contacted BL Claims Solicitors as specialist clinical negligence solicitors. We investigated the case and sent a formal Letter of Claim to the Trust involved.  Our case was that the defendant hospital should not have allowed him to leave the hospital when he did. The Trust did not admit responsibility but following negotiations Mr X accepted £35,000 in full and final settlement of his claim. 

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About the Author

Gemma is a Senior Associate in our Clinical Negligence team with extensive experience in all areas of medical negligence claims.

Gemma Osgood
Email Gemma
023 8085 7248

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