Inquest probes care given to asylum seeker

·2-min read

Heath and hospital treatment provided to an Iranian asylum seeker who died after moving to Tasmania for a fresh start will be examined by a coroner.

Saed Hassanloo had spent time in detention across the country, including at Sydney's Villawood Detention Centre, after arriving in the country a decade ago.

In 2015 he embarked on a hunger strike of about 40 days in Perth, which resulted in him needing hospitalisation.

Mr Hassanloo likely took his own life in Hobart in August 2016 aged 27, about eight months after moving to the city, although his body has never been found.

A coronial inquest began in Hobart on Tuesday which will look at the circumstances around his death.

It will also examine the communication between the federal Immigration Department, the Tasmanian Health Service and Red Cross, which was involved with Mr Hassanloo's care.

Counsel assisting the coroner Cameron Lee said the issue of potential "roadblocks" in communication would be explored.

Mr Hassanloo had been admitted to the Royal Hobart Hospital not long before his death.

"A critical issue will be what steps, if any, the hospital could have taken to have Mr Hassanloo stay there until his Red Cross case worker arrived," Mr Lee said.

The inquest's scope includes whether the hospital had the ability to deal with presentations by asylum seekers.

Mr Hassanloo arrived at Christmas Island by boat in 2010 after leaving Tehran and subsequently made several applications for refugee status, but all were denied.

Mr Lee said there was significant evidence Mr Hassanloo, who had been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and depression, had not been engaging with mental health treatments.

The inquest will hear evidence from police officers, health workers and commonwealth representatives.

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