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Suicide father 'let down by mental health service'

A father-of-one committed suicide just days after pleading with a mental health team for help.

An inquest into the death of 36-year-old Mark Buxton heard how he had twice previously attempted to kill himself and had asked a consultant psychiatrist for help four days before taking a fatal cocktail of prescription and over-the-counter drugs in October last year.

The health trust was criticised by coroner Roger Hatch after hearing evidence at Dartford on Tuesday.

The inquest heard Mr Buxton, of Craylands Lane, Swanscombe, was offered medication by Dr Murugesu Selvaratnam at Dartford Mental Health Trust and advised to return in three days.

Mr Buxton's wife Harriet asked Dr Selvaratnam to apologise during the hearing and told the court her husband should have been sectioned there and then.

When the consultant refused, the coroner advised Mrs Buxton to take the matter up with the Trust's chief executive.

Mr Hatch added: "I find that Mark Buxton took his own life as a consequence of the failure of the Dartford Mental Health Trust to admit him to hospital for appropriate treatment."

Speaking after the inquest, Mrs Buxton said she intended to take the matter further.

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