NHS Trust chief ‘determined to learn’ from hospital ward homicide

Islington Town Hall. Photograph: Islington Council.

The chief executive of Camden & Islington NHS Foundation Trust has promised her organisation will “make any necessary changes” to prevent similar incidents to the recent murder in a Highgate hospital.

Jordan Bramble, 21, was charged with murder and arson in February after a 46-year-old man died following a fire at Highgate Mental Health Centre on Dartmouth Park Hill.

The Trust’s boss Angela McNab has now laid out plans to bring down the levels of violent incidents on wards, focusing on inpatient areas, as well as a drive to capture and categorise verbal abuse.

McNab said: “With regard to patient safety, we made progress against our overall aim of promoting safe and therapeutic ward environments through preventing violence.

“We continue to have high levels of violence and aggression on our wards and are committed to seeking to change this.

“We are determined to learn openly from all serious incidents including the tragic homicide on an acute ward that occurred this year, and make any necessary changes to strengthen our quality and safety.”

McNab says the Trust has introduced ‘peer debriefing’ systems after restrictive interventions are performed on wards, and has further committed to building an increased capacity and capability on the part of staff to undertake risk assessments.

According to Trust figures, 34 incidents resulting in ‘Severe Harm or Death’ occurred in Camden and Islington between April 2018 and March 2019, with 199 resulting in ‘Moderate Harm,’ 676 resulting in ‘Low Harm,’ and 4302 resulting in ‘Low Harm’.

Islington Council will consider the Trust’s 2018-19 Quality Report on 15 July.