The mother of a paramedic who died while in the care of a mental health trust has said 'seeing is believing' when it comes to the trust taking action to deal with concerns about its care.

Natalie McLellan's daughter Rebecca, 24, from Ipswich, died in November, but concerns have been raised about the treatment she received from Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT).

Representatives from the Campaign to Save Mental Health Services in Norfolk and Suffolk met with MPs from Suffolk and Norfolk and Maria Caulfield, the parliamentary under-secretary for mental health, earlier this week to call for improvements at the trust.

READ MORE: Suffolk and Norfolk police asked to investigate NSFT deaths

Following their meeting, a list of actions was created to tackle the situation, with Maria Caulfield set to write to the NSFT highlighting the need for reform, while a request is also going to be sent to the Department of Health and Social Care calling for a public inquiry into the trust.

Natalie said: "I think it was a positive meeting in lots of ways. I think all of the MPs, including Maria Caulfield, were aligned in agreeing that their needed to be a radical look at improvements with the NSFT, that it could not carry on as it is.

"We have been sent out a list of actions that they are going to take."

READ MORE: Campaigners to protest against NSFT outside Parliament

In December, the EADT revealed how campaigners had written to chief constables in Norfolk and Suffolk requesting that they open investigations into 8,440 deaths between April 2019 and October 2022.

The deaths were revealed in a report by auditors Grant Thorton, which was commissioned by the Norfolk and Suffolk Integrated Care Boards and involved people who were either under the care of the trust, or had been up to six months before they died.

Natalie said the whole culture at the NSFT needed to change with more transparency, empathy and care, as well as improvements to communication.

She added: "They say all the right things and if they stick to their word and do all the things they say they are going to do, then I will be quietly reassured, but seeing is believing."

A spokesperson for NSFT said: “We offer our sincere condolences to all families and carers of people who have lost loved ones.

"We can assure all families and carers that we are working really hard to learn from these incidents and do our very best to ensure they are minimised in future.

“As a trust, we are on a rapid and much needed journey of improvement which has been strengthened by the welcome arrival of our experienced chief executive officer, Caroline Donovan.

"Caroline has a proven track record for transforming mental health service provision and has made improving the quality of the clinical care provided by our trust, for those that need us, a number one priority.

“A review of prevention of future deaths is already underway to ensure improvements in practice have been made and learning is embedded across our clinical services.

"Key themes which we are working on, include, but not limited to are communication, waiting times, medicines management and record keeping.

"As an example, one area where we have made considerable progress is our work with service users, families and carers across Norfolk and Suffolk.

"A detailed carer development programme is in place, supporting carers, families, and those they are caring for. It is also important to note that earlier this year, the Trust moved from a CQC rating of Inadequate to Requires Improvement.

“Over the last six months, there has been a significant amount of work undertaken to improve how to collect, process and use mortality data. We published an update which was shared in January 2024.

"To improve our management and reporting of mortality data, we have developed a new system, which includes an electronic list of all patient deaths that have occurred during care at NSFT or within 6 months of discharge from NSFT services and an interactive dashboard which displays the patient data and allows users to view the information according to a range of different perspectives, such as age, gender and ethnicity.

"Work started on this new process in April 2023 and it was made live on the 6 November 2023, covering deaths notified after November 1 2023.

“Working with our partner organisations, service users, families and carers across Norfolk and Suffolk, we will continue to ensure our local communities have safer, kinder and better mental health services they rightly deserve.”

READ MORE: Ipswich news