Partner of mentally ill man who fell from Archway Bridge calls for better mental health services after criticising lack of care

The partner of a man who fell to his death from Archway Bridge has criticised Haringey’s mental health services for the “shambolic” treatment he received.

Troy Brown, who suffered from paranoid schizophrenia, died after he fell from the bridge over Archway Road, Highgate, on August 6, 2013.

Danielle Brooks, his partner of seven years, said Mr Brown was continually “let down” by Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust, which treated him for 10 years.

Although the 32-year-old was supposed to be on medication, Ms Brooks said he did not take anything after February last year.

She added that his care worker was supposed to see him weekly at his home in Tottenham, but in the three weeks before he died he did not receive a visit.

“Someone should have taken control of the situation,” said Ms Brooks, who is the mother of Mr Brown’s two young children.

“It wasn’t like he was a new user to the services and had no history. He should have had better monitoring as he was a high risk for suicide.

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“They said they were going to do this and they were going to do that, but they never followed through. They would ring him to make an appointment, but when he got there, they wouldn’t turn up. They let him down.”

The criticisms of Mr Brown’s treatment follow similar claims from the family of 33-year-old Jonathan Culverwell-Landsberg, who fell from Archway Bridge two months before Mr Brown.

At the inquest into his death in October, Mr Culverwell-Landsberg’s family criticised the quality of Haringey’s mental health services. Mr Brown was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia in 2003 after he first tried to take his own life. He received visits from a care worker but Ms Brooks, a former hairdresser, said that over the years, his mental health deteriorated.

Ms Brooks, 25, of Cockfosters, described the services run by Barnet, Enfield and Haringey’s Mental Health NHS Trust as “shambolic”.

Mr Brown was treated with drug injections but asked doctors to prescribe him tablets in February last year because he did not like the side effects.

Ms Brooks said he was known not to take his tablets regularly and should not have been prescribed them.

A spokesman from Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust said: “The trust would like to reiterate our sincere condolences to the family of Mr Brown for their sad loss.

“If the family would like to discuss any element of Mr Brown’s care from the trust, we would be happy to do this. It is not appropriate to comment further ahead of the inquest.”

Ms Brooks has called on the trust to improve its mental health services to prevent more deaths.

“Haringey has such a high number of people with mental health problems, they just need to be on top of care,” she said. “People are campaigning about Archway Bridge but really it’s the mental health services we need to focus on.

“The bridge isn’t the problem.”