A HAMPSHIRE woman suffering from depression jumped in front of a train days after celebrating her 40th anniversary, an inquest has heard.
Anna Masson, 67, told her husband, Gordon, she was going to meet a friend before driving to Micheldever train station on November 17 last year.
The former medical practitioner was later found dead after being hit by a train bound for Manchester that was travelling at 100mph.
It was heard, Mrs Masson, of Hill Farm, Sutton Scotney, suffered from depression and days before her death she phoned her GP Dr David Simpson worried that she was also developing dementia.
Her husband, Dr Gordon Masson, told Winchester Coroner’s Court her mental state had worsened following a hip operation in 2011 and underwent cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).
“She did not find the CBT very helpful,” said Dr Masson.
“She had been putting on a brave face for the past 30 years not just at our anniversary.”
Dr Masson added his wife gave him a hug and said goodbye before she left the house on November 17, which he thought was out of the ordinary.
It was heard she found her anti-depression medication ineffective in the six months leading to her death, but it had helped her in the past.
In a statement read out to the court, train driver Steven Long, described how Mrs Masson stood in front of the Manchester-bound train and stared directly at it before it hit her.
Weeks before her death, the former medical practitioner was referred by her GP to see a psychiatrist and Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust send her a self referral letter.
This asks patients to phone up and make their own appointment however, senior coroner Grahame Short said the referral system needs to change as people with mental disabilities may find it hard to self-refer.
As a result, the coroner said he will be conducting a Report to Prevent Future Deaths about the referral system and he will be sending this the Southern Health.
In response, Kate Brooker, associate director of mental health at Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust said: “We are very sorry for the loss of Anna and offer her family and friends our sincere condolences.
“After learning of Anna’s death, we began an investigation to review the support we had offered and to see if there was anything we could have done differently.
“We will carefully consider the evidence heard during the inquest."
Before her death, Anna was director of charity the Boaz Project at her home.
The horticulture-based charity was established in 2007 to provide a day centre where adults with learning disabilities could grow plants, care for animals, learn to cook and develop craft and woodworking skills.
Mrs Masson was also a director at Wessex Fertility Ltd, based in Southampton, from 2004 to 2007.
Senior Coroner Grahame Short recorded a verdict of death by suicide.