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Smothering the truth

BMJ 2001; 322 doi: (Published 26 May 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;322:1311
  1. Raj Persaud, consultant psychiatrist
  1. Maudsley Hospital, London

    Did the NHS fail Sarah Lawson?

    The story of the killing of Sarah Lawson by her father was on the front page of two of the biggest selling newspapers and featured prominently in all the others. It dominated broadcast news bulletins, and there were interviews with the distressed mother, Karen Lawson, on the BBC Radio 4 Today programme and on BBC2's Newsnight.

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    Sarah Lawson (above): NHS did not simply turn its back on her, says her mother (right)

    On May 15, the Express front page headline screamed: “The day I had to kill my darling daughter.” Beneath it was the following paragraph: “Sarah Lawson, 22, had begged him [James Lawson] to end her torment after she was repeatedly failed …

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