Statement from Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Our statement following the conclusion of the inquest into the death of Bethany Tenquist:

Dr Rick Fraser, Chief Medical Officer and Acosia Nyanin, Chief Nurse, at Sussex Partnership, said: “We would like to offer our sincere condolences to the family of Bethany Tenquist.

“The safety of vulnerable people with complex needs who are under our care in hospital is our first priority. We always strive to manage this responsibility whilst respecting peoples’ privacy and dignity.

“We take the Jury’s verdict and the Coroner’s comments extremely seriously. We will make sure the criticisms of our organisation are acted upon and used to help us continue improving services for patients and families.

“In the light of our immediate review following Bethany’s tragic death, we strengthened our procedures for caring for vulnerable patients at Mill View Hospital. This included introducing daily checks on our wards to make sure people do not have access to inappropriate items. We have also introduced training and guidance for staff on searching bedrooms, managing environmental risks and maintaining the quality of peoples’ care plans.

“These actions cannot in any way compensate for the loss Bethany’s family have experienced. However, we want to assure patients, families and the public that we are committed to listening, learning and making changes to continuously improve the care we provide.

“In the last year we have introduced a new clinical leadership team at Mill View Hospital. We have also established a ‘working together’ group to involve people who have used the hospital’s services in helping us to continue improving services for patients and families.”