Student who hanged himself was assessed as low risk

Rowan Sollitt, 19, killed himself 24 hours after he had been assessed as a low risk by counsellors, an inquest heard

Rowan Sollitt, 19, killed himself 24 hours after he had been assessed as a low risk by counsellors, an inquest heard

A suicidal student who hanged himself at his halls of residence had been assessed as a low risk by counsellors just 24 hours earlier, an inquest has heard.

Rowan Sollitt, 19, a Manchester Metropolitan University first year, visited an 'open door' health and well-being service and told them 'the world would be better off if he was dead.'

The student also showed staff the cuts to his wrists from self harming but the teenager was sent away after a 10 minute consultation with a counsellor.

He was told he would be placed on a waiting list of up to seven weeks.

The following day Rowan who was studying computer science at Manchester Metropolitan University was found dead in his bedroom at New Medlock House by a plumber who had come to fix a faulty lightbulb.

At an inquest into his death a coroner criticised the university service for their 'naïve' approach to mental health saying a 10 minute slot was not enough to determine what risk troubled student could pose to themselves.

Rowan, who grew up in a £360,000 farmhouse with his family in Denholme, near Bradford, has been described as an 'extremely intelligent young man'.

But he battled with depression after his family moved back to the UK following a stint living in Mexico.

He was said to have 'struggled to fit in,' secretly been self harming and was subsequently prescribed anti-depressants by his GP.

The youngster attended the walk-in service on November 30 last year where he filled out the form before seeing a counsellor to indicate their thoughts and feelings prior to the consultation.

The teenager was said to have indicated 'intrusive' thoughts and said he 'sometimes' made plans to end his life and believed 'the world would be better if he were dead - most of the time' 

He said he 'often thought about hurting himself.'

Rowan's father Michael said he appeared excited about November but he he had battled depression and struggled with the death of his grandfather

Rowan's father Michael said he appeared excited about November but he he had battled depression and struggled with the death of his grandfather

Kathleen Matthews, a counsellor at Manchester Metropolitan university said: 'Rowan walked into the open door service and when he came he said he had a history of depression and he went on to say he had self harmed himself in the past.

'I asked him where he cut himself and he showed me his wrists. But he did not indicate that he wanted to kill himself and he had made future plans. For me to take the opposite view, he would have had to say to me or indicate that he was going to kill himself. If he had been a high risk the protocol would be to put him in a taxi to the hospital.

Rowan's family hope the much-loved 19-year-old's experience with mental health services will not be repeated for others

Rowan's family hope the

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