Inquiry to probe deaths of teenage mental health patients
A COMMISSION of inquiry will investigate the previous Queensland government's closure of the Barrett Adolescent Centre in Brisbane, and the subsequent deaths of three high-risk teenagers, the State Government has announced.
The $9.5-million inquiry was an election promise made by Labor the day after the ABC's 7.30 Queensland program revealed government documents warned of potential deaths if the centre was closed, and of the need for alternative care options.
The Barrett Centre was the state's only long-term residential mental health facility for adolescents at risk of suicide.
When the Newman government closed the centre in January 2014, it promised other services would be there.
Within eight months, three former patients were dead.
Queensland Health Minister Cameron Dick said the inquiry would focus on the "full facts surrounding the decisions" that led to the shut-down and the "subsequent tragic deaths".
If you or someone you know is thinking about suicide, call:
Lifeline on 13 11 14
Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800
MensLine Australia on 1300 789 978
Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467