The horrific abuse of Thomas in his ‘independent’ living from December 2012 to Spring 2013 left him deeply traumatised.
His mum Paula said,
“To see such a change in your child is heart breaking and I just felt so helpless. He became violent and angry and mistrustful of more people due to fear out of what may happen to him.
“We have had to take him to hospital on numerous occasions because he has tried to selF harm by doing things such as hitting his head on the wall, which we think is linked to the abuse’.
So, what was health and social care’s solution?
The only one it appears to have if someone is ‘difficult’ to manage.
Medicate, in a hospital treatment unit.
So a Kirklees mental health doctor ‘assessed’ Thomas and recommended, he be ‘treated’ in Lynfield Mount Hospital in Bradford.
His Mum was vehemently opposed.
His abuse in Norcott House had been acted on Thomas was now safe and it was still his home.
‘The hospital will not be able to manage him. I’m scared they will just control him with medication. I feel Thomas is being moved from pillar to post by the very people who are supposed to be helping him. He has been let down.”
Despite her pleas in October 2013 Thomas was put in a van and transported to the Highfield Unit, of Lynfield Mount Hospital under a MHA section.
Where he remained 10 long months in a tortured heavily drug induced hell.
What further psychological and physical harm must this ‘treatment’ have caused Thomas.
‘He can’t eat, he can’t talk – he just dribbles. He’s been turned into a junkie; he’s addicted to his anti-psychotic drugs because he’s kept on the maximum dose to make it easier for them to cope.
It breaks my heart. He sits naked in a corridor just wrapped in a quilt. He has no modesty or dignity in there.
He is my beautiful, beautiful little boy. When I ask the unit why he’s left naked like that they tell me it’s what he wants. I ask them lots of questions, I don’t get real answers. I think they see me as a trouble-maker but I’m not, I’m Thomas’s mum.’
Thomas was 19, alone, deeply traumatised, 4ft 10 inches, Downs and Autistic.
And this was his at least £8,000 + per week NHS treatment.
It was even proposed, Thomas be sent to St Andrews Hospital, Northampton 125 miles away.
In July 2014, Thomas was yet again put in a van and driven 50 miles.
As he was now 19 and this was a move to ‘community living’ ‘a home of his own’, this was under a MCA deprivation of liberty order to Kingdom House, in Sheffield.
Owned by Lifeways Community Care Ltd, it had just been built and made ‘operational’ in July, just in time for Thomas..
Who was its first, and only resident, joined eventually by one other, despite its 8 person capacity.
Kingdom House, was described as,
‘, physical and mental reablement and respite facility, designed for adults with learning disabilities, those on the autistic spectrum and sensory impairments, mental health issues and complex needs’..
And could provide,
“high complex care service for people with learning disabilities, complex health needs, autism and physical disabilities.”
But, does not mentioned what this service consisted of.
And, no one enquired how, Kingdom House proposed to cope with, let alone help, a highly traumatised Thomas, now miles away from his family with different strangers.
Yet, this placement was commissioned by the local health and social care trust without even an inspection from the CQC for at least £4,000 a week.
And a Court of Protection Judge, the LA, and Thomas’ Official Solicitor paid and chosen to represent him, all decided Kingdom House was in his ‘best interests’.
Why and How could they all have decided this ?
What did Kingdom House have that the two proposed placements in Bradford did not ?
A designated number of CIB checked care workers, ‘trained’ and approved, after one day’s induction on restraint, health and safety, and medicine administration.
Thomas’’ risk assessment’, and care plan, photos of workers on walls, a secure safe environment, drugs and a management system.
Internet packages, CQC Compliant off peg models can be used to set up such deemed ‘specialist’ care.
But only the big, approved players, like Lifeways, will be commissioned.
Lifeways, had already been tipped for success back in 2011.
Venture Capital advisors had reported,
‘private equity could potentially play an important role in achieving the government’s objective of migrating services out of NHS hospitals and into safe, more convenient and more economical community based settings’.
Lifeways had already acquired Support Options, Independent Living Alliance, SLC Group and Oaklands Community Care and more recently Care UK.
Lifeways has since been acquired by Cambian, part of Omers Private Equity Portfolio, who had also acquired Homeleigh Care, who owned Norcott House, where Thomas was so badly abused.
In October 2016 Cambian was bought by US Universal Health Services whose ex chief executive was Simon Stevens now head of NHS England.
Venture capital cares only about balance sheets, acquisitions, and sell offs, not Thomas.
It makes profit from asset stripping our social care and our most vulnerable.
Their private profit, made from our public funds.
Making profits for investors, mainly pension funds and banks,
Cambian’s Chief Executive Officer, earns £450,000 per annum.
Company directors also share in acquisition payments.
August Equity paid £46 million for Lifeways in 2007, and then sold it, to Omers Private Equity for £210 million
Read promotion of investment in Health and Social Care by brokers.
The Care Quality Commission did not even inspect Kingdom House until November 2014 after it received “concerns about the service“.
I assume from Paula Rawnsley who had complained to them that she suspected her son was being abused and was unhappy .
Yet despite these concerns and no other prior inspection the CQC decided on an announced, routine inspection.
‘People using the service did not voice or express to us any concerns or worries with regards to their safety at the service.
What is meant by ‘safety’?
And how could service users, be expected to ‘express concerns’, when heavily medicated, with communication difficulties and at the 24/7 mercy of those, they were raising concerns about?
‘Prior to the inspection, we spoke with one relative who had concerns that incidents and allegations were not followed up appropriately by the service. We did not find evidence to support this to be the case’.
How could this be ascertained, from an announced inspection’s paper work, and a handful of on message, management teamed itinerant care workers desperate to keep their jobs ?
If you read the CQC report, it appears, Lifeway’s expensive ‘ high complex care services’ to ‘reable’ Thomas,
Consisted of a few shift workers, who medicated, allowed a resident to help them cook, arranged themed evenings in the house, and, took them to the shops’.
How could anyone, think this, adequate for Thomas’ now, very severe needs?
Or warrant £4,000 + per week.
Here is a video of Thomas mother Paula talking to Learning Disabled England in a meeting in 2014 months before Thomas died.
She says how Thomas sobs to come home every night on the phone from Kingdom House.
He never did.
The meeting was called by LDE to hear the disabled’s voices instead Paula was gagged by the LA/COP and Thomas died shortly afterwards.
Thomas before his abuse in Norcott House and ATU ‘treatment’.