Rabone and Another v Pennine Care NHS Trust: QBD 23 Jul 2009

The claimant’s daughter had been a voluntary patient at a mental hospital. She committed suicide when on home leave from a secure ward. The claimant now said that the hospital had acted incompatibly with their daughter’s human rights, in releasing her when she needed care.
Held: The claim failed. Since Melanie was a voluntary mental patient, not detained under the Mental Health Act, the NHS Trust did not have an operational obligation to her under ECHR article 2. Even if the NHS Trust did have such an operational obligation under ECHR article 2, it was not in breach of that obligation. The allegation of systemic breach of ECHR article 2, namely failure to adopt systems of work to protect the lives of patients, was rejected. The NHS Trust was not in breach of the investigatory obligation under ECHR article 2. The claimants were not victims for the purposes of section 7(7) of the Human Rights Act.
It was not equitable to extend the one-year time limit for bringing the human rights claims under section 7(5) of the Human Rights Act. If the claimants had succeeded in their claims, the proper award would have been andpound;1,500 for each claimant.
Simon J
[2009] EWHC 1827 (QB), [2009] LS Law Medical 503, (2009) 110 BMLR 56, [2010] PIQR P2
Human Rights Act 1998 7, European Convention on Human Rights 2, Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1934
England and Wales
Cited by:
Appeal fromRabone and Another v Pennine Care NHS Trust CA 21-Jun-2010
The claimant’s daughter had committed suicide after being given home leave on a secure ward by the respondent mental hospital. A claim in negligence had been settled, but the parents now appealed refusal of their claim that the hospital had failed . .
At First InstanceRabone and Another v Pennine Care NHS Foundation SC 8-Feb-2012
The claimant’s daughter had committed suicide whilst on home leave from a hospital where she had stayed as a voluntary patient with depression. Her admission had followed a suicide attempt. The hospital admitted negligence but denied that it owed . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 19 February 2021; Ref: scu.375080