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Student Commits Suicide After Social Worker Refuses Her Mental Health Support

September 17, 2013

This can never happen again.

A depressed student who was found hanged in her bedroom turned to social workers for help but was dismissed as “a f***ing waste of space” and an “attention seeker”.

Hannah Groves, a 20-year-old undergraduate at Southampton University, desperately sought help from the NHS, warning doctors she wanted to kill herself. For nine days, Hannah repeatedly requested to be admitted into a specialist mental health unit but was ignored.

On October 22 last year, the French student strangled herself.


Now, Hannah’s mother Mandy Park is taking legal action against the Southern Health NHS Trust, after a coroner recorded she was not given the help she was entitled to.



“It was like she was possessed,” Park said. “But we just couldn’t get the help that she needed and she wanted.The image of finding my daughter will haunt me for ever and I can no longer sleep at night without heavy medication.”

The cruel comments were made by a social worker to a police officer, who had telephoned the mental health team and expressed concerns over Hannah’s welfare. The officer was told: “Yeah, I know her, she is an f***ing waste of space, she’s an attention seeker,” according to the Daily Echo.

During the week before her death, Hannah attended A&E after two suicide attempts in the space of three days and was assessed by the NHS. Despite a trainee doctor flagging up Hannah’s suicidal state of mind, the student was deemed fine to return home.

Following an inquest earlier this month, coroner Keith Wiseman said: “There was at all stages a failure to appreciate the extent of the risk that Hannah was at in the community.

“It is surely self-evident that by the end of the week it was unsafe for both Hannah and her family for her to be at home,” the Sunday Times reported Wiseman saying. “One only has to pause for a moment to visualise Hannah’s mother and teenage brother being forced to leave the house for their own safety in the early hours of the morning and for the police to have to be called, to realise that by then a wholly impossible stage had been reached and that for however modest a period of time Hannah required hospital admission and care.

The trust has admitted liability but denies Hannah should have been hospitalised. “We must always strive to support people in their own homes and be very cautious about admitting people to psychiatric hospitals unless it is absolutely necessary,” a spokesperson for the trust said. “In this case we deeply regret the failure to provide the right level of intensive community support which would have avoided any need for hospital admission.”

3 Comments leave one →
  1. September 17, 2013 7:19 am

    Hospital Trusts are always putting profit before people. I know a disturbed young lad who was admitted after a serious suicide attempt and then discharged without any,counciling or follow up after care who then took his own life.

    The NHS has too many managers making bite size chunks with matching uniforms and corporate policies ready to be sold off to have time to properly treat patients. Those in power treat this national Legacy as their own twinsets to sell off and line their pockets. Another case of profit before people and manslaughter charges for criminal negligence should be brought . RIP this un helped troubled young woman

  2. Allcharlie permalink
    September 17, 2013 7:33 am

    Think some Social Workers should not be in their jobs. From my own experiences I have witnessed regular events of incompetence including divulging ‘Confidential’ information to third parties. They make up their own minutes of meetings to suit their cause/the result they want to achieve. Then there is an outcry when something goes wrong. There should be a pro active body that a person needing help can turn to. Social services need to be reviewed. My personal experiences will be published shortly hopefully 🙂

  3. September 17, 2013 1:27 pm

    This is could have been prevented, if only the university, social care and the NHS worked together, this sad loss of life could have been prevented, if it had been tackled in a much more professional, with more understanding of mental health issues, sadly there are many working in this area who have so little compassion and care for their patients. JL

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