A ‘FUN-LOVING’ man took his own life after struggling to cope with trauma after he suffered burns in a fire.

An inquest in Blackburn heard how a review was launched into mental health care offered to 34-year-old Adam Hamer, who was found with a ‘do not resuscitate’ note on his chest after overdosing on prescribed medication.

Lorry driver Mr Hamer was found on July 18 in his bed by partner Emma Lowe.

At the inquest, Miss Lowe said: “When I pulled the cover off him he had a piece of cardboard on his chest with the letters DNR written in marker pen.”

Mr Hamer was admitted to Royal Blackburn Hospital where tests revealed he had a mixture of painkillers, anti-depressants and anxiety drugs in his system and was suffering from a lack of oxygen to the brain.

He died two weeks later on August 1.

After his death, devastated Miss Lowe raised questions about the assessment of Mr Hamer’s mental health, including his dosage of the anti-depressant amitriptyline.

The inquest heard how in April, Mr Hamer had been burning rubbish in the back garden of his home in Cherry Crescent, Rawtenstall. The fire ignited faster than expected and he suffered burns to his arms.

He was in a hospital burns unit for two weeks, and Ms Lowe said he never got over it.

The accident was the start of a downward spiral for Mr Hamer, who remained in considerable pain, struggling to sleep, and began taking prescribed medication, including amitryptyline, which can also be used as a pain relief, to ease the discomfort.

Coroner Richard Taylor said: “He was prescribed amitriptyline in May, and the dosage was increased twice, once in June and again on July 9.”

Giving evidence, his GP Dr Kathryn Atkinson stated the anti-depressant was prescribed only at the level to treat pain, not at a level they would have used to treat depression.

She said: “At the low level it would act as a painkiller and help him to sleep, which is what he was struggling with, and he was warned about becoming addicted to the drug.”

Mr Hamer’s mental state declined further and on June 24 he took an overdose of medication in an attempt to end his own life.

Following this, he was seen by the mental health liaison team and prescribed a higher dosage of his medication by his GP.

Mr Taylor asked Dr Atkinson: “He abused the drugs and tried to kill himself but then it was deemed appropriate to increase the dosage two weeks later, why was this decision made?”

The inquest heard a letter sent to Mr Hamer’s GP on June 28 from the mental health liaison team explained he was depressed.

It stated he would require a review of his medication and an appointment with a clinical psychologist for trauma therapy.

Unfortunately due to human errors in the recording system, an appointment was never made, his case never discussed and communication between mental health services and the GP became confused.

Miss Lowe said: “The GP didn’t read the letter properly and his medication was increased. He didn’t even want to be on the medication, it made him suicidal.”

Dr Atkinson said Mr Hamer wasn’t being treated for depression at that time as he had only been referred to them for pain control.

Mr Taylor said: “I can understand the GP’s thought process as he was talking about being in a lot of pain and not being able to sleep and that’s what they wanted to address.

“They thought if his sleep improved this might improve his anxiety and depression.

“Had his case been discussed and an appointment made, he may have been seen before he died.

“That’s where things went wrong. But I can’t say whether any further treatment would’ve saved his life.”

Safety lead for mental health services in Lancashire, Ieuan Thomas-Cole, said a review looking at the standard of communication between the GP surgery and the mental health team was launched.

He said: “The standard of communication wasn’t the best, and staff have been spoken to. It’s accepted he should’ve been put into the system”

A conclusion of suicide was recorded.

After the inquest, Miss Lowe, said: “He was a fun-loving, caring man. We had a good life before the accident.

“Adam always worked, he was an HGV driver, which he loved. He was a step-dad to my two children and loved them.

“He was close to my brother, Arron, who was in Big Brother in 2012, and he is totally devastated.

“This has ruined our lives, it’s affected us so much.

“There’s been a review into the way the mental health team and the GP dealt with this, and I just hope this can stop it happening to other people.”