Inquiry into killings finds mental health services underfunded

An independent inquiry into three killings by mental health
patients in Hampshire found that services were underfunded.

The inquiry looked at the killings committed by three men, two
of whom had been discharged from hospital and one who had left
without permission.

One of the main findings in the inquiry’s report released last
week was that staff from North Hampshire Loddon (correct) Community
NHS Trust were “resolute in their attempts to close the old asylum
and modernise mental health services, but their determined efforts
were hampered by inadequate resources”.

Hampshire Council was “a relatively low spender on mental health
services during the period reviewed by us”, the report says.

The three killings by Mark Longman, Paul Huntingford and
Christopher Moffatt were committed in north Hampshire between
1996-98, and each of the men had received inpatient services in
Basingstoke. The report says spending in this area suffered from
“little additional investment” in mental health services until four
years ago.

Funding since that period has improved, the council says, with
an extra £2.8 million bringing the council above the national
average for mental health services expenditure.

The review commissioned by North and Mid Hampshire Health
Authority and Hampshire Council’s social services department, also
says there was an inadequate number of nurses working on the area’s
hospital wards serving mental health patients.

The council says: “Since these tragic events the county has
worked closely with both the health authority and the local NHS
trust to ensure that the best possible mental health services are

Full report and summary available by clicking

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