News

Edenfield Centre: MP demands inquiry after distressing BBC exposé

Panorama’s undercover film showed ‘toxic culture’ of abuse where vulnerable patients were goaded, inappropriately restrained and locked in isolation for months

Panorama’s undercover film showed ‘toxic culture’ of abuse where vulnerable patients were goaded, inappropriately restrained and locked in isolation for months

The alleged abuse of vulnerable patients by nurses and other staff at one of the UK’s biggest mental health hospitals should be subject to a public inquiry, an MP has said.

Speaking in the House of Commons on 13 October, Bury South MP Christian Wakeford called for an inquiry into the Edenfield Centre in Prestwich, Greater Manchester, after a BBC Panorama investigation uncovered a ‘toxic culture’ of abuse in which patients were sworn at and ‘inappropriately restrained’.

‘Deeply distressing’ images should be subject of inquiry, says MP

Mr Wakeford said the ‘deeply

Panorama’s undercover film showed ‘toxic culture’ of abuse where vulnerable patients were goaded, inappropriately restrained and locked in isolation for months

Aerial photo of the Edenfield Centre
The Edenfield Centre Picture: BBC

The alleged abuse of vulnerable patients by nurses and other staff at one of the UK’s biggest mental health hospitals should be subject to a public inquiry, an MP has said.

Speaking in the House of Commons on 13 October, Bury South MP Christian Wakeford called for an inquiry into the Edenfield Centre in Prestwich, Greater Manchester, after a BBC Panorama investigation uncovered a ‘toxic culture’ of abuse in which patients were sworn at and ‘inappropriately restrained’.

‘Deeply distressing’ images should be subject of inquiry, says MP

Mr Wakeford said the ‘deeply distressing scenes’ from the programme ‘brought tears across the country’, but that the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) had been silent on the issue.

‘The programme showed some of the most vulnerable people in society being physically abused and goaded, sexualised behaviour from staff to patients, falsifying medical records, and patients locked in isolation for months on end,’ Mr Wakeford added, calling for an apology for patients and their families.

He went on to say some of the families of those featured in the programme are ‘still being blocked’ from contacting their relatives, who are ‘desperate’ to move out of the Edenfield Centre and are still in seclusion.

Health minister suggests Care Quality Commission could be held to account

Health minister Will Quince apologised to families and patients at the mental health hospital, adding that he believes the allegations meet the threshold for an independent inquiry.

‘It should not have happened and it is our role as ministers – and in fact all those who work within the NHS – to do all we possibly can to prevent it from happening again. [Mr Wakeford] asks for an independent inquiry, I believe it does meet the threshold to do so.’

In the BBC programme, nurses and other staff were secretly filmed swearing at patients, joking about them self-harming, and using inappropriate methods to restrain a patient with autism.

Several staff members have since been suspended and a police probe launched into the allegations. Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the centre, said it had put ‘immediate actions’ in place to protect patients.

Mr Quince added that DHSC would look at holding the Care Quality Commission to account. The care watchdog is said to have inspected the hospital and praised its ‘strong, motivated leaders’ during the time when the BBC was secretly filming.


Find out more

BBC Panorama: Undercover Hospital: Patients at Risk


In other news

Sign up to continue reading for FREE

OR

Unlock full access to RCNi Plus today

Save over 50% on your first three months:

  • Customisable clinical dashboard featuring 200+ topics
  • Unlimited online access to all 10 RCNi Journals including Nursing Standard
  • RCNi Learning featuring 180+ RCN accredited learning modules
  • NMC-compliant RCNi Portfolio to build evidence for revalidation
  • Personalised newsletters tailored to your interests

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this?

Jobs