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National calls for inquiry into Burton case

Dr Lynda Scott National Associate Health Spokesperson

2 September 2001

National calls for inquiry into Burton case

National is demanding the Health Minister initiate a full scale inquiry into the case of paranoid schizophrenic, Mark Burton.

"Mark Burton has been found guilty by reason of insanity of murdering his mother. I have discussed this tragedy with Mark's father, Trevor, and fully support the family's call for an in-depth investigation into the case," National's Associate Health spokesperson, Dr Lynda Scott, said today.

"I strongly disagree with Annette King's speech last week to the conference of the Mental Health Services of Australia and New Zealand, saying that clinicians are playing too safe.

"The release of Mark Burton into the community shows this is not the case.

"In fact, the pendulum may have swung too far the other way. The Minister is out of touch and captured by a mindset that community care is the only way.

"This tragic case of the Burton family is being externally investigated by the Southland DHB but this review does not go anywhere near far enough.

National demands that Annette King use her power under the 2000 Health and Disability Act to initiate a full scale inquiry into the case.

"This family wants answers and National fully supports them in their quest," said Dr Scott.

Ends

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