Court fines trust for duty of care failure

A hospital trust which admitted failing in its duty of care to a
nurse killed by a patient diagnosed with schizophrenia has been
fined at the Old Bailey.

South West London and St George’s Mental Health trust was fined
£28,000 with £14,000 costs, after the judge said its
conduct had fallen “significantly below” that necessary to ensure

The trust had been prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive
for breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, after
psychiatric health care assistant Eshan Chattun was beaten to death
at Springfield hospital, Tooting, in 2003.

The case was referred to the Old Bailey by the magistrate’s court
after the trust pleaded guilty to neglect. The Old Bailey has the
power to impose an unlimited fine but the judge said this would
have led to cuts in services or a cash injection from public

Following the case, Chattun’s widow Famide said: “We believe this
prosecution was very important to make sure that no other NHS
worker is put at risk in the way that Eshan was”.

The family is now planning to bring a civil claim against the

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