Mental Health Inquiry Announced

Media release

02 December 2015

An external inquiry, reporting to the Director of Mental Health, into the management and treatment of community-based Mason Clinic special patient Manjit Singh was announced today by the Ministry of Health.

Director of Mental Health Dr John Crawshaw says Mr Singh was a special patient under a compulsory care order, when he breached the conditions of his leave, and allegedly attacked his former partner earlier this month.

Mr Singh is currently in the Waikato DHB Henry Bennett Centre awaiting trial.

Dr Crawshaw says the Inquiry will cover the treatment and management of Mr Singh and will make recommendations for the mental health service to minimise the risks of further similar incidents.

As part of the rehabilitation of special patients, leave in the community is used to help prepare patients for their eventual return to society. The Director of Mental Health approves the stages of this short term leave on the basis of recommendations of the local clinical team.

The Inquiry will be carried out by Dr Nick Judson and David Niven. Dr Judson is a Wellington based consultant in forensic psychiatry. David Niven is a Northland and Auckland based District Inspector.

The Inquiry is expected to be completed part way through next year. The full recommendations of the Inquiry will be made public, but other parts of the Inquiry may not be released to prevent any interference with any legal action still underway.

For more information contact: Peter Abernethy, Media Relations Manager, 021 366 111.

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