[Image: Daily Mirror.]

[Image: Daily Mirror.]

After Mid Staffs, we should all treat allegations such as these with equanimity.

The Mid Staffordshire NHS suffered hysterical headlines claiming that anything between 400 and 1,200 people had died due to failures of care.

In fact, the number of such lapses for which the trust was found guilty totalled just four.

Of course, the Staffordshire allegations concerned a time when the Labour Party was in office, so the right-wing press had a field day.

These allegations related to events from 2011 onwards, when the Conservatives were in charge of health.

Perhaps we should compare the ways in which the two stories are approached.

The NHS has failed to investigate the unexpected deaths of more than 1,000 people since 2011, according to a report obtained by BBC News.

It blames a “failure of leadership” at Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust.

It says the deaths of mental health and learning-disability patients were not properly examined.

Southern Health, one of the country’s largest mental health trusts, has “serious concerns” about the report’s interpretation of the evidence.

The trust covers Hampshire, Dorset, Wiltshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire, providing services to about 45,000 people.

The investigation, commissioned by NHS England and carried out by Mazars, a large audit firm, looked at all deaths at the trust between April 2011 and March 2015.

During that period, it found 10,306 people had died.

Most were expected. However, 1,454 were not.

Of those, 272 were treated as critical incidents, of which just 195 – 13% – were treated by the trust as a serious incident requiring investigation (SIRI).

Source: NHS trust ‘failed to investigate hundreds of deaths’

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