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Mental health patient takes own life after being discharged

Lowri Miller
Lowri Miller Image credit: family photo

A woman from Beddau, Rhondda Cynon Taf, who was discharged from a mental health unit was found dead at a friend’s house the following day.

Lowri Miller, 32, was a patient at Royal Glamorgan Hospital, despite concerns being raised by her social worker and family she was released in February 2020.

A day later her body was identified at a friend’s house.

Ms Miller had a history of mental health conditions, including an emotionally unstable personality disorder, which dated back to her teenage years.

On 2 February 2020 she was admitted to hospital, whilst in the mental health unit she took a second overdose on 5 February.

Her social worker, Emma Roberts, told an inquest being held at Pontypridd Coroner’s Court Miller was planning to take her own life.

"She was frustrated by the response she was getting from the clinicians and the team. She felt like she was asking for help and nobody was listening," Roberts told the hearing.

Despite Roberts trying to raise concerns with the doctor he said he was too busy to speak to her before going ahead and discharging Miller from the hospital.

Roberts managed to talk to nurse Jordan Jones, who told the social worker they would escalate any concerns with the doctor.

"The discharge did not sit comfortably with me," Roberts said.

Roberts was unaware there were discussions being held to discharge Miller and she was not included in the conversations.

"She wanted to stay in hospital, she didn't feel able to keep herself safe. She said she didn't want to be alive, she had a plan to end her life,” Roberts said.

"The level of hopelessness was something I had never seen before. I wanted to make clinicians aware, my line manager aware. I was concerned about what Lowri was telling me." 

Since Miller’s death procedures have changed to allow care coordinators to raise concerns to senior nursing staff.