YOUNG VOICES

Doctor Rebecca Ovenden Who Wrote Viral Post About Pressures Of Working For NHS Found Dead In Home

A 'much-loved' and 'talented' doctor.

05/04/2017 13:29 BST

A “much-loved” junior doctor, who wrote a viral post about the pressures of working for the NHS, has been found dead in her home. 

The body of Dr Rebecca Ovenden was discovered by her husband at their house in Devon on March 28. 

An inquest heard that the 32-year-old had “a history of mental health issues” and had previously made an attempt on her life. 

A cause of death has yet to be determined by the coroner’s court, but police are not treating the doctor’s death as suspicious, the Plymouth Herald reported.  

Rebecca Ovenden
The body of junior doctor Rebecca Ovenden was found in her home in Devon last month 

Ovenden hit the headlines in November 2015 when she wrote a passionate Facebook post defending the NHS which was shared more than 38,000 times. 

“I heard a patient’s relative comment the other night at work ‘we waited four hours for that’,” it read. 

“I wish I could have turned to them and said ‘YES! – BLESS THE NHS! It is because of the NHS you can walk into an Emergency Department at 1.35 in the morning and no matter your complaint be seen by a doctor.” 

Rebecca Ovenden
The 32-year-old hit headlines in 2015 after writing a viral Facebook post defending the NHS 

“Please don’t complain in earshot of your health care professional about waiting four hours to be seen in the middle of the night, free of charge by a doctor, with a smile on their face who has not been rude to you, who has reassured you, when the reason it took four hours to see you was because they were trying to save the life of an elderly man who had not wanted to make a fuss about a cold when he was dying of a raging chest infection. 

“Be thankful of the service you get at the moment, no matter how crappy you might think it is. You never know when you or a loved one might need it.

“It may not be around in its current form for much longer. Then what would you say?”

Google Maps
Ovenden had worked at Derriford Hospital in Plymouth for 18 months 

The junior doctor, who was originally from Grantham, Lincolnshire, had been working at the A&E department of Derriford Hospital in Plymouth for 18 months before she died. 

Ovenden’s colleagues called her a “much respected, talented doctor”. 

Anne Hicks, a consultant in emergency medicine at Derriford Hospital, told Devon Live: “Becky worked in the Emergency Department for 18 months and was a much-loved member of our team.

“She will be very sadly missed. Our thoughts are with her family and loved ones.”

Useful websites and helplines:

Samaritans offers a listening service which is open 24 hours a day, on 116 123 UK and ROI - this number is FREE to call and will not appear on your phone bill.)

Mind, open Monday to Friday, 9am-6pm on 0300 123 3393.

Get Connected is a free advice service for people under 25. Call 0808 808 4994 or email: help@getconnected.org.uk 

HopeLine runs a confidential advice helpline if you are a young person at risk of suicide or are worried about a young person at risk of suicide. Mon-Fri 10-5pm and 7pm-10pm. Weekends 2pm-5pm on 0800 068 41 41.

Maytree is a sanctuary for the suicidal in north London in a non-medical setting. For help or to enquire about a stay, call 020 7263 7070.