Essex mental health patient died despite staff alarm

During a tragic incident at the Derwent Centre in Essex in 2022, an 18-year-old patient, Morgan-Rose Hart, was found unresponsive in her bedroom and later passed away. It was revealed during an inquest that an audible alert sounded for nearly 52 minutes when Morgan-Rose had already informed staff that she was going to take a shower.

The digital patient monitoring system at the unit, which is run by Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (EPUT) in Harlow, triggered the alarm, and staff members and the head of patient safety at Oxehealth, the system’s operator, provided evidence at the Essex coroner’s court. The inquest heard concerns about “alert fatigue” among staff and issues with the Oxehealth system’s online training and implementation. It was mentioned that the system was interacted with five times before someone eventually checked on Ms. Hart.

One nurse stated that they were devastated by the incident, relying on the Oxehealth system, as it continued to indicate that Morgan-Rose was in her room. The news indicates that the inquest continues, with further investigations needed into this tragic event.

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