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Universities beware

Universities in the UK are already subject to a myriad of pressures – and long gone are the days of their ivory-towered indifference to student welfare. But they are facing a new burden, after the parents of one who took her own life are now likely to sue.

At Bristol University Natasha Abrahart, a 20-year-old physics student who had severe social anxiety, hanged herself in April 2018.  At the inquest into her death the senior coroner said guidelines were not followed by the NHS staff who were medicating Natasha. The blame was laid entirely on the NHS.

Natasha’s parents have said they are now going to take legal action against Bristol University, which seems a trifle odd. So universities don’t just have to educate young people – they have to make sure they don’t commit suicide as well. This could be tricky…