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Patient took own life going missing from mental unit
A PATIENT took his own life after going missing from a Southampton mental health unit, an inquest heard.
Conal Browning, 25, of St Catherine's Road, Southampton, died less than two months after being transferred to the city's Antelope House from a hospital in Oxford.
The philosophy student's body was found hanging by a police officer exercising his dogs, off a quiet coastal road in Bexhill, East Sussex, in August 2010.
Southampton Coroner's Court heard Mr Browning had suffered mental health problems for a decade, and had repeatedly run away during his treatment.
His mental health co-ordinator, Helen Smee, said he was an “unusually intense and private” man, which made it difficult to assess the extent of his condition.
In July he had been moved to Southampton because he wanted to move to the city to be near his best friend.
The inquest was told Mr Browning's parents had expressed serious concerns about him being moved from Oxford because he had historically struggled to adapt to changes, but the transfer was brought forward suddenly and happened before a planned meeting between them and doctors.
Doctors in Oxford agreed to the transfer after being told a bed was available at Antelope House, and that health authorities in Southampton could not afford to continue funding his treatment elsewhere.
The inquest is expected to run until next week.