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Sunday, 9 October 2011

Psychiatric abuse in teen patient secure unit - FIDDAMAN counterpoint blog EXCLUSIVE

Probe into teen patient abuse at secure unit

By Mail On Sunday Reporter

Last updated at 2:03 AM on 9th October 2011

Comments (2) Add to My Stories Share A major investigation is under way into allegations of abuse at a psychiatric unit for some of Britain’s most troubled teenagers.

Seven staff members have been suspended amid claims of a ‘culture of abuse’ at the Roycroft Unit at St Nicholas Hospital in Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

It has been claimed that carers at the clinic, a medium-secure facility for mentally disordered offenders and youngsters, mocked patients.

Investigation: It's claimed that patients were mocked at St Nicholas Hospital in Newcastle

A spokesman for Northumberland Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust said: ‘The trust is undertaking an investigation into alleged inappropriate behaviour and seven members of staff have been suspended.’

More...Horrific video shows autistic boy, 11, screaming for mercy as he is kicked, choked and hit by driver and helper on school bus

'Our priority is always to ensure the ongoing safety and well-being of our patients and, in line with our policy of zero tolerance for any inappropriate or potentially abusive behaviour, the trust has taken immediate action and suspended the two members of staff.

'In addition the trust does not tolerate any members of staff who may have witnessed inappropriate behaviour and who fail to report it.

As a result of a probe, five members of staff at the Roycroft Unit have been arrested

'As a result of the ongoing investigation, a further five members of staff have been suspended.

'In the meantime all actions have been taken to ensure that appropriate staffing levels on the unit are maintained by qualified and experienced staff from other parts of the organisation.

'We have an active and ongoing campaign which encourages and emphasises the importance for staff, patients and/or carers to report any concerns they may have and all issues are dealt with promptly and robustly as is the case with this investigation.

'All appropriate safeguarding processes have been implemented, and all relevant agencies have been informed.'

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