Edana Minghella obituary

Leading mental health researcher who also wrote scripts for the TV series Doc Martin and went on to become a jazz singer

The healthcare researcher, scriptwriter and jazz singer Edana Minghella, who has died aged 63 of endometrial cancer, played a key role in restoring faith in community care of people with mental illness after public confidence was shaken by a series of scandals in the 1990s.

Governments had for 30 years been pursuing a policy of closing the UK’s long-stay mental hospitals and instead supporting people in the community through therapies, practical support and slow-release medication. But a chain of serious incidents, including the 1992 killing of Jonathan Zito by Christopher Clunis, prompted growing calls for the policy to be reversed.

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