Tragic: Chelsea Clark, 13, was found hanged at her home in July 2011 after struggling with depression

Tragic: Chelsea Clark, 13, was found hanged at her home in July 2011 after struggling with depression

Hospital workers have been criticised for not doing enough to stop a 13-year-old girl from harming herself after she was sent home following an initial suicide attempt.

Grammar school pupil Chelsea Clark was found dead in her bedroom in Finchfield, West Midlands in June 2011.

She had previously spent eight days in hospital after taking a deliberate overdose, and told medics that she would try to kill herself again if she was sent home.

The teenager also told a school psychologist that she had cut herself after hearing voices, just two weeks before her parents found her hanged.

A ?serious case review? published yesterday by Wolverhampton Safeguarding Children Board found that hospital staff missed a number of opportunities to help Chelsea.

In spring 2011, the 13-year-old took an overdose of painkillers and spent eight days in a hospital which is not named by the report.

Doctors decided not to admit her to a specialist adolescent unit, and discharged her without a meeting to discuss her future care.

The decision came despite the fact that Chelsea ?was as clear as she was able to be that a return home would lead to a further suicide attempt?, according to the report.

In the months leading up to her death, the schoolgirl ran away from home and wrote suicidal thoughts in her diary.

The review criticised ?a number of examples of individual sub-optimal practice? involving mental health staff, social workers and the police.

And it said a ?more effective collaborative effort? could have been made to keep Chelsea safe, ?if best practice had prevailed at all times?.

The review, which identified Chelsea only as ?FJ?, made more than 30 recommendations to improve care and prevent a repeat of the tragedy.

It said: ?In essence, whilst apparently showing only limited signs of depression, FJ emerged as feeling lonely, helpless and stressed in the face of high levels of pressure from within her family.

?Observation of self-inflicted scarring on arms and abdomen by the GP and hospital respectively suggest also that FJ had found coping with her life more difficult than was obvious to others.?

An inquest in September heard that Chelsea, who attended Wolverhampton Girls? High School, may have suffered post-traumatic stress disorder from her ?stifling? home life.


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