Colin Martin, Chief Executive at Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Tragically a 17 year old, who was a patient at West Lane Hospital, died on Friday at James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough. This followed an incident at West Lane Hospital. We send our sincere condolences to the young person’s family and friends at this distressing time.
“We also understand that it continues to be a very difficult time for the family and friends of Christie Harnett and they remain in our thoughts.
“We always carry out a full review when someone under our care dies so there will be a full investigation into both incidents, which will be carried out along with other agency partners. As the investigations are carried out we are unable to make any comments regarding individual care.”
Actions we are taking
“We take the recent concerns relating to West Lane Hospital extremely seriously and we are committed to making the improvements required to ensure that we provide safe, high quality care.
“In June, concerns were raised by Care Quality Commission (CQC) around recording of observations, risk assessments and staffing levels given the acuity of patients. As a result we have instigated a significant programme of work. Additional measures have included increased leadership and additional support for staff on the wards. In July we also consolidated the number of wards at West Lane Hospital from three to two. Doing this helped us to address staffing and safety in order to better meet the needs of the young people in our care. It has also allowed us to bring together skills and capacity to enable staff training and support, improve supervision and to address the concerns identified by the CQC.
“We continue to work closely with NHS England, CQC and other partners to provide assurance that we are making the necessary improvements. We also continue to offer support to the young people, parents and carers during this difficult time and would encourage anyone who is concerned to get in touch with us.”