Health trust guilty over teenager’s care death

Oxford Crown Court. Picture: Robin Stones / CC BY-SA 2.0.
Oxford Crown Court. Picture: Robin Stones / CC BY-SA 2.0.
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A MENTAL health trust has apologised has apologised over the death of a teenager who drowned in a bath while under its care.

Connor Sparrowhawk, 18, who had learning difficulties, was found submerged in water at Slade House, an NHS care and assessment unit in Oxford, in July 2013.

Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust – which provides care across Hampshire – pleaded guilty at Banbury Magistrates’ Court to breaching health and safety law.

Interim chief executive Julie Dawes said: ‘Connor’s death whilst under our care was entirely preventable and today we have pleaded guilty to the charges brought against the trust by the HSE.

‘Connor’s loss continues to have a devastating impact on his family and we are truly sorry we didn’t keep him safe.

‘Connor is a constant reminder why we must continue to do everything we can to improve the quality and safety of our services.’

The trust will be sentenced next month.