Lawyers on behalf of the current Henderson Residents

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Lawyers on behalf of the current Henderson Residents Empty Lawyers on behalf of the current Henderson Residents

Post  Admin on Sat Jan 12, 2008 9:22 am

Henderson Hospital: threat of closure
10th January 2008

In December 2007, Leigh Day & Co was contacted by a resident at the Henderson Hospital, as the resident had been informed that Henderson Hospital was going to be closed.

Since then, there have been numerous press articles quoting Peter Houghton, Chief Executive of the South West London and St George's Mental Heath NHS Trust, as he described the decision to close the Henderson Hospital as regrettable.

Leigh Day & Co’s clients describe the potential effect of closure as life threatening. One client stated that if the Henderson Hospital closes, at best she will end up in a secure hospital ward, and more likely that she will re-attempt suicide and may be successful.

Links to this story contain multiple statements for past residents at the Henderson Hospital describing how the Hospital saved their life; as well as statements from leading mental health organisations and professionals strongly condemning the decision. Frances Swaine said:

“The Henderson Hospital provides a specialist, effective service to some of the most vulnerable members of our society. Closure of the Hospital will have dire consequences for current residents, as currently no viable alternative treatment options have been put forward. Financial reasons have been put forward for the closure of the Hospital, but we understand the service provided is actually cost-effective in the long term as well as hugely beneficial for individuals, and therefore there appears to be no justifiable reason for closure.

The Department of Health states that mental health services are currently a national priority and it is a travesty that the closure of such a renowned service is even being contemplated.”

About the Henderson Hospital

The Henderson Hospital (part of South West London and St George's Mental Heath NHS Trust) has a long and distinguished history. It was established in 1947 and from the beginning operated as an innovative residential unit, offering treatment for people with complex emotional and behavioural needs, (who have often been diagnosed as suffering from 'personality disorder'). Residents of Henderson are voluntary patients who enter into a 12-month therapeutic process to help them cope with their particular needs, which culminates in further six-month out-patient facility to provide on-going support.

It has an international reputation as a pioneer in Democratic Community Treatment. Scandinavians have stressed the importance of Henderson in social work training. Centres in the USA and the Netherlands have acknowledged their respect for both the early and continued work at Henderson. Psychiatrists in the UK describe Henderson as being the model for the hospital-based (secure-unit) treatment of mentally abnormal offenders. Consultants see it as an in-patient treatment centre for residents whose treatment cannot be effected anywhere else. All residents come for treatment as a last resort, all other methods of treatment having failed.


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