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Josh Sahota, who died at Wedgwood mental health unit in Bury St Edmunds, had raised concerns over how much he was being monitored, inquest told




A man who was found dead in a mental health unit had raised concerns over how much he was being monitored, an inquest was told.

Josh Sahota, 25, of Danehill Road, Kennett, was found in his room by staff at the Wedgwood mental health unit in Bury St Edmunds on September 9, 2019, with a plastic bag around his head.

On August 25, he had asked a member of staff if he could go under 'eyesight' observation as he did not feel safe after another patient racially verbally assaulted him, the inquest at Suffolk Coroner's Court was told today.

Josh Sahota, of Kennett, who died at Wedgwood House in Bury St Edmunds.
Josh Sahota, of Kennett, who died at Wedgwood House in Bury St Edmunds.

Such observation would have seen Mr Sahota left within eyesight and accessible by staff at all times.

The court was told senior staff were not made aware of the request and it was decided Mr Sahota go under hourly observation.

The court heard how two days after making the request for closer observation Mr Sahota reported feeling better.

The Wedgwood unit in Bury St Edmunds which is run by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust.
The Wedgwood unit in Bury St Edmunds which is run by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust.

However, Hannah Noyce, counsel for Malk Sahota, Josh's father, shared concerns over why someone who was deemed high risk and with paranoia was not being monitored more regularly.

Gabriela Martin, then lead consultant psychiatrist on the Northgate Ward at the unit, told the inquest today the decision to not over-monitor Mr Sahota was based on edging him towards re-integrating into the community.

She added because of his paranoia and the fear people were 'after him', it was decided less observation was the best approach.

The court was also told Mr Sahota going on 'unescorted leave', when he went away on day trips with family, was a natural progression toward lessening his observational hours.

The first 'substantive' care plan for Mr Sahota was put in place on August 29, weeks after he was first admitted to the unit.

Ms Martin said she was surprised it had taken so long to make up the 'not adequate' plan and that there were also inaccuracies on it.

A crisis plan was not made up either, which would have detailed what Mr Sahota could have done if he was having suicidal thoughts.

Staff also failed to carry out a risk assessment which would have highlighted objects which could have been used to aid a suicide, such as a plastic carrier bag, the inquest heard.

The inquest opened yesterday, when it heard how on August 2, Mr Sahota had driven his Vauxhall Corsa off of the A11 bridge, just outside Newmarket, and it plunged on to the A14 below, seeing him rushed to Addenbrooke's Hospital, in Cambridge.

There Mr Sahota received received treatment for his injuries which included partial collapse of his lungs, a fractured pelvis, and several rib fractures.

He was later transferred to the Southgate Ward of Wedgwood House and eventually on to the Northgate Ward, where he died.

The inquest continues.

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