‘Lessons have been learnt’

Trevor Sprigg
Trevor Sprigg

Hospital chiefs say serious lesson s have been learnt after a patient walked out the B2 ward - and was knocked down by a car.

Trevor Sprigg, who had long-term mental health problems, had threatened to ‘throw himself under a train’ before leaving the ward on the evening of Friday 26th August 2011.

But just moments later the 50-year-old was hit by a Vauxhall Vectra on Blyth Road and later died from extensive injuries.

Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust officials told the two-day inquest held at Nottingham Coroners it has abandoned the ‘open door’ policy meaning patients now need staff authorisation to leave and enter the ward.

The trust has also implemented further staff training after coroner Mairin Casey ruled crucial discussions between psychiatrists over Mr Sprigg’s case had been ‘woefully inadequate’.

Miss Casey ruled out suicide but said given Mr Sprigg’s ‘vulnerable’ mental state she could not rule out the possibility of an ‘impulsive act of self harm’.

Speaking after the inquest, Mr Sprigg’s uncle Dennis Sprigg said he feels hospital staff ‘could have done more’ to help him.

“This came as a very big shock to me and all those who were close to Trevor. He was our flesh and blood and this has been an awful two years,” he said.

“Trevor had been sectioned at the end of July 2011 and you thought he was safe at Bassetlaw Hospital. We just hope these changes mean this kind of tragic accident never happens again. Our thoughts are also with the driver who has sadly passed away since.”