INDEPENDENT NEWS

Govt enquiry into DHB handling of Preece case called for

Published: Sat 13 Jul 2019 10:57 AM
Government enquiry into DHB handling of Preece case called for
Social Credit is calling for a Government enquiry into the Nelson Marlborough District Health Board over it's handling of the Sarah Preece attack in 2017 and its subsequent report.
Party leader Chris Leitch says Nelson MP Nick Smith is right to call on the board to formally apologise to Sarah Preece but that doesn't go anywhere near far enough.
The Board's report is not simply deficient, it is the ultimate in butt covering when it says Mrs Preece's attacker presented at the emergency department with no risk when all the records clearly show he was assessed as psychotic and at risk of self-harm and of harming others.
Sarah Preece was brutally attacked and raped because of a failure in emergency department procedures yet she has been treated abysmally by the board.
The fact that the board has made changes to its procedures to ensure that people who present in a psychotic state are treated in a timely manner is cold comfort to Sarah Preece.
Furthermore, the fact the Board and Mrs Preece have reached a confidential settlement, after her having battled it for nearly two years, cannot it be relied upon by the Board as it having discharged its duty in the matter.
I congratulate Nick Smith for having taken up Mrs Preece’s case and tried to get the board to respond appropriately, but he has had little success.
It’s now time for the government to step up and take action.
A government enquiry should not be hunting for heads to roll, or apportioning blame for this unfortunate incident.
What it should be doing is ensuring that the board fronts up, owns up, and apologises publicly to Sarah Preece for the way in which it has treated her.
The enquiry should also ensure that the DHB’s report reflects the truth and not the white wash that it currently does.
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