Employees at psychiatric hospitals who were harmed while playing football with patients are entitled to compensation.

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Employees at psychiatric hospitals who were harmed while playing football with patients are entitled to compensation.

After getting injured while playing football with inpatients, staff at secure mental health hospitals in Merseyside have been compensated.

Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust, which provides the majority of mental health care in the region, including secure facilities like Ashworth Hospital in Maghull and Clock View Hospital in Walton, has paid out on two of every three football injury claims.

Football has long been a part of the activities available to patients in some of the city’s mental health centers who are incarcerated or seeking treatment.

Staff are not required to participate, but “participation in activities of shared interest can be therapeutically beneficial,” according to the trust.

However, according to a Mersey Care board of directors quarterly safety report: “Four cases of staff being harmed while playing football with patients have occurred, three of which have resulted in claims against the Trust and two of which have been successful, resulting in expenses.

“We’ve elevated this to the Secure Division.”

The locations and circumstances of each case were not mentioned in the report.

However, the most recent football-related event, which occurred between February and March this year at the Scott Clinic in Rainhill, was listed in a list of recent claims and had “estimated costs” of £35,000.

Mersey Care has closed allegations including patient assaults on employees, clinical negligence, and manual handling.

The trust stated that liability had only been admitted in one football-related case, despite Mersey Care settling the other successful claim without admitting culpability.

“We can confirm we have received three personal injury claims in the previous four years linked to football activities with patients,” a Mersey Care spokesman said.

“Only one of those cases has conceded culpability, and compensation negotiations are still ongoing. The allegations occurred over a period of years, and the events that led to them were unique in each case.

“As an organization, Mersey Care has promoted exercise and physical activity because they help patients heal in a variety of ways.

“They are, however, not without risk of injury, and employees are not required to participate.

“The most important duty. Summary ends.

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