Deaths at St. Andrews Hospital, Northampton

St Andrews Hospital, Northampton.

An inquest into the death of 41 year old William Johnson, who had lived in St Andrews for 18 years, heard 3 other men on his ward had predeceased him, exhibiting  similar symptoms and on the similar medication.

The first death was on October 23rd 2010, second March 31st 2011, third April 3rd 2011 and then, Mr Johnson on May 31st 2011.

4 deaths, half the 8 bedded ward, in just 8 months.

This ward was costing the tax payer at least £ 96,000 per week tax free of NHS public money.

A staggering 120,000 a week, as untaxed, for an 8 bed ward, where half the patients died in 8 months with same deaths and nothing done.

Yet despite this being NHS OUR money nothing has been done

And this is allowed to be MHA treament,

why did William die? For his care costing then over £10,000, A WEEK.

A Coroner, delivered a narrative verdict .

And he refused to reopen the inquest.

The only other inquest into the previous deaths had recorded death by ‘natural causes’.

Narrative verdicts were created in 2004, and merely describe the circumstances of a death not how it was caused.

Dr Adewale Aromolaran, the senior doctor, in charge of the ward, when Mr Johnson died told the inquest,

He was not involved ‘in any discussions about the three previous deaths’,

Despite Mr Johnson’s similar medication and similar  physical symptoms.

Yet ‘Parallels’ between the deaths were noted by the inquest.

However, Dr Aromolaram was made aware, of the second, and, third deaths, on his becoming a member of the ward ‘team’.

But despite the quick succession of deaths, the last 2 men to die before Mr Johnson, dying within four days of each other, and Mr Johnson, ‘ vomiting large amounts of body salts.’

As his organs, slowly, filled up with a faeces impaction, a common condition in the autistic per se and a side effect of the high dosages of at least two different antipsychotics.

The doctor alarmingly, gave evidence at the inquest that;

“There were no discussions. No talks at all about those deaths that I was involved in”.

All men were medicated with clozaphine which is known to cause constipation.

Click to access serioius-gastrointestinal-adverse-effects-of-clozapine.pdf

So, the managing doctor, of an 8 bedded ward where 3 deaths had already occurred in only 7 months before he became part of the ward management team was not informed of the first death, nor discussed the similarities of the second and third.

Nor, even, more crucially, did the doctor connect this latest death with the  two deaths, less than 2 months before William Johnson, who like William would have been presumably also ‘vomiting up large amounts of body salts’.

And, worse stilldespite a 3rd death, the hospital appeared to have taken no precautions, to find out the reasons, nor change the treatment of the others in the ward.

The medication was continued in the same high dosage to people incapacitated, throwing up  permanently in bed.

 How can this be treatment under MHA section-  ? And interminable except on death of patient ?

And why did no one check on the physical health of these successively dying men as they were obviously seriously ill, throwing up and no doubt in constant agony.


The doctor gave evidence, that it had been impossible even to ‘try’ to examine Mr Johnson’s abdomen during a ‘routine’ health check as he would not let the examination proceed.

How likely is it that a man, bed ridden full of chemical coshes, vomiting up salt, would/ could/should  have not allowed a hand on his bowel area easily able to pick up such a serious impaction, which should in any event, should have been picked up from vomiting salt, the side effects of medication and three previous deaths in similar circumstances in less than 8 months ?

And if continual medication can be enforced why not a life saving examination ?

Did no one ask why all these men were vomiting up body salts ?

And, in any event, would such a ‘routine’ health check have checked for and detected an impaction. ?

And, why, was only a ‘routine’ health check, thought sufficient, when this man was obviously dying, in the same manner, in the same ward, as his 3 fellow ward occupants, in quick succession ?.

How many ‘routine’ health checks, are tick boxed refused, and, who actually performs them ?

On this basic safety/ care issue, staggeringly, Dr Aromolaram, was not aware  of any hospital strategy in place, if a health check was refused.

St Andrews glossy PR is on the internet

The tax payer, was, paying at least £9,000 per week for this ‘treatment’, when charitable tax exemption is factored in.

We do not know the figures that is charged and paid for with our public money.

The Priory and Cygnet charge a minimum of £900 per night and up to £12,500 a week for an autistic 15 year old in an acute mental health bed.

See the structure of the provision and ward system here:

Click to access St%20%20Andrew’s%20Accounts%20for%202013%20to%202014%20(reduced%20size%20for%20web).pdf

St Andrews, had a turnover of £187.5million in 2013/14.

And, its chief executive at the time was earning £675,000 per annum.

The service was private, and commissioned and paid for by NHS England.

3 learning disabled, a day, died of inadequate NHS care, last year- that’s a staggering 1200, and, it was probably more this year.

Mencap dismayed by lack of progress to stop avoidable deaths of people with a learning disability

And, billions of profit has been made from their care.

Care Quality Commission Report 2014 see summary – Requires Improvement.

See summary.

Since the deaths St Andrews have been forced to acknowledge the role medication might play

St Andrews Healthcare’s recycled income


St Andrews Hospital, Northampton.

St Andrews Hospital, Northampton.

St Andrew’s Healthcare, employs more than 3,000, providing mental healthcare, for psychiatric illnesses, disabilities, and brain injuries.

Through residential and ‘community-based’ care, and training and research at four centres across England.

One of its centres, St Andrews Hospital in Northampton, is the largest psychiatrist residential unit in Europe.

St Andrews Healthcare’s expertise and training has little, if any, independent input.

And despite the danger that all its various roles, psychiatrists, nurses, researchers, trainers are  employed by St Andrews  and  there is therefore a conflict of interests between their professional independence, and their employer’s corporate overriding profit ethos albeit recycled .

More than 95% of its patients, are funded by the NHS.

The average public payment per week  is in the region of £12,000 a week for a secure ward per patient and a likely minimum of £900 a day .

St Andrew’s Healthcare, as a Charity, pays no tax, so  that equal to  £15,000 per week per patient..

Charity tax relief, was historically allowed because individual provided their own money for charitable purposes.

Professor Philip Sugaman, was the chief executive at St Andrew’s Healthcare until 2014.

Due to public criticism of his £653,000 basic salary,

Not the 5 unexpected deaths, in one year, of his service users.

Professor Sugaman dropped his title of chief medical officer, and, salary, to £625,000.

Accounts show that from April 2013 to when he left in February 2014 due to ill health, he had received £285,000.

An historically-agreed leaving package, saw him net an extra £465,000.

A total of £751,000 in a single year.

On top of a £500,000 pension.

At the time, the average pay, of an NHS chief executive was £164,000.

The latest Charity Commission accounts for St Andrews, show a total of 64 members of  staff earned £100,000, or more.

The executive directors and company secretary, earned £941,000 between them, in basic wages,

And, they claimed £19,000 in expenses, and were awarded bonuses totalling £195,000.

Professor Sugarman and Mr Pellington did not receive a bonus.

The accounts saying

Bonus payments are based on the performance of the charity, the quality of services and individual’s performances.”

But there is no measure of outcomes for service users and see inadequate CQC reports on services.’s%20Accounts%20for%202013%20to%202014%20(reduced%20size%20for%20web).pdf

This Company Report states,

during 2013/14 income continued to grow ( untaxed), reflecting growth in occupancy ( more long term residential )as well as an increasingly specialist mix of service users, with a particular emphasis on autistic spectrum disorder and learning disabled.’

So the autistic, and ‘learning disabled’ are now the new goldmine.

This record level of income is accompanied by successful management of costs and finding new and more efficient ways of working’

‘more efficient ways of working’ has resulted in 7 revealed deaths at least, in those paying £6,000 per week for mental health services.

As a society ,should we allow, our most vulnerable, to be removed by court order under MCA and MHA section in secret, to secret, unaccountable ‘treatment’, that is, the most efficient for maximum extortionate profit?

And why is such huge profit allowed, when  our NHS public services are cut to the bone and Trusts have huge deficits .