Belfast Telegraph

New investigation launched into Muckamore Abbey abuse

A second investigation has been launched into abuse at Muckamore Abbey Hospital.

A second Serious Adverse Incident (SAI) review is being carried out following fresh allegations of abuse.

The latest independent investigation will examine "the care and treatment of a former patient" at Muckamore Abbey.

The BBC has reported that the review will be carried out by an independent panel.

"With the agreement of the Department of Health, it was determined that this would be more appropriately undertaken by a fully independent panel under the trust's complaints procedure," a Belfast Trust spokesperson said.

A previous report commissioned by the Belfast Trust to examine safeguarding procedures over the five years up to 2017 discovered a "culture of tolerating harm" at Muckamore.

Police are currently carrying out an investigation in relation to the hospital and a number of staff at the facility have been suspended.

Relatives of patients at the hospital have called for an independent inquiry to be held into abuse there.

Last month Department of Health (DoH) permanent secretary Richard Pengelly said that he was "shocked and appalled" after viewing CCTV images of Muckamore Abbey Hospital.

Sinn Fein MLA Colm Gildernew said the latest developments had been "deeply concerning".

"I have been regularly engaging with the Trust with regards to developments on Muckamore and I have raised concerns with the previous SAI report into the facility," the party's carers and well-being spokesperson said.

"I met with the Belfast Trust in recent weeks to discuss developments in Muckamore but I was not made aware of this new SAI investigation.

"The Belfast Trust’s previous SAI report-which has yet to be published-was seriously lacking, particularly with regard to involving families of those affected in shaping the terms of reference.

"This must not be repeated. Deepening concerns around the treatment of patient's in Muckamore adds further weight to calls for a public inquiry."

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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