When Graeme Moyle says another DHB inquiry is ludicrous, he knows what he is talking about. His brother, Colin Moyle was murdered by a mental health patient.
Mr Moyle, now a spokesman for the Sensible Sentencing Trust says the fact that Wellington’s District Health Board has launched another inquiry is a smoke screen to cover up the systemic failures of a mental health system in utter chaos.
A report revealing treatment blunders and leadership problems within Hutt Valley District Health Board’s mental health services released 12 months ago looked at the care of five patients, including a woman who set herself on fire at the acute inpatient unit, and ongoing concerns relating to the statutory leadership and wider systemic issues.
Now Wellington’s District Health Board has launched another inquiry into how a mental health patient was able to escape from custody and allegedly stab a man in the face.
The 22-year-old has been returned to Wellington Hospital’s mental health unit following the incident on Friday, in which a 21-year-old received multiple stab wounds.
The DHB says it will look at the health board’s transportation policy, including whether it was followed or if it needs to be updated.
Mr Moyle is critical of the DHBs scope of investigation citing wider issues and systemic failures.
“It would probably be a good idea for them to also look at whether this patient was suitable for community care in the first place, the reasons behind his return to inpatient care and whether there was a history of violence, medication non-compliance and drug or alcohol abuse” says Graeme Moyle, SST’s Mental Health issues spokesman.”
“To focus solely on the DHB’s transportation policy is ludicrous and ignores the real reasons behind this potentially lethal incident.”
“The review is expected to take at least a month and will, I suspect, be carried out in-house, the results of which will never see the light of day” says Moyle, “I’ll sort the transportation policy out for them now; use the bloody kiddy locks! Now that’s sorted, the DHB can spend the next four weeks investigating the real issues.”
This incident coincides with another on Tuesday of the same week where a mental health patient broke out of a ward at Hutt Hospital, stole a car, broke through the barrier arm and was pursued through Wellington by Police until they were able to force him from the road.
“Investigations into these events need to be dealt with transparently and independently and not behind closed doors by individual DHBs, the results of which no one gets to see.”
“In the 2010 / 2011 fiscal year, Police were called to incidents involving the mentally ill no less than 10,700 times, that’s 29 times a day, says Mr Moyle, “this is not an efficient use of Police resources and mental health services, if they believe community care is the best form of treatment for the severely mentally ill, need to urgently pick up their game.”
Sensible Sentencing Trust Mental Health Issues Spokesman
Phone 07 8275121
Mobile 0274 941414