Health board to be re­viewed af­ter mur­derer’s case

Western Mail - - NEWS - Will Hay­ward Re­porter will.hay­ward@waleson­

AN IN­DE­PEN­DENT as­sess­ment of a Welsh health board has been or­dered to en­sure lessons have been learned from the case of Kris Wade.

This fol­lows months of pres­sure from health­care and pa­tient groups, as well as politi­cians for a pub­lic inquiry.

Wade, 37, is cur­rently serv­ing at least 21 years in prison af­ter ad­mit­ting the mur­der of his 65-year-old neigh­bour, Chris­tine James, at her Cardiff Bay flat in March 2016.

He had pre­vi­ously been ac­cused of sex­u­ally abus­ing pa­tients with learn­ing dis­abil­i­ties in 2012 and 2013 while he worked for Abertawe Bro Mor­gan­nwg Uni­ver­sity (ABMU).

Although the com­plaints were in­ves­ti­gated by po­lice, no crim­i­nal case was ever heard.

An in­ter­nal re­view was launched by the health board that also looked at the re­la­tion­ship be­tween him and his fa­ther, who was then the health board’s men­tal health and learn­ing dis­abil­i­ties clin­i­cal ser­vice di­rec­tor. The records of 59 pa­tients came un­der re­view.

A cat­a­logue of is­sues emerged, in­clud­ing that Wade ob­tained em­ploy­ment with the health board “with a stan­dard ap­pli­ca­tion form used at that time but only con­tained three lines of sup­port­ing in­for­ma­tion”.

It also said there was no ev­i­dence of a Crim­i­nal Records Bu­reau (CRB) check.

De­spite dis­miss­ing the need for a pub­lic inquiry three weeks ago, Cab­i­net Sec­re­tary for Health, Well Be­ing & Sport Vaughan Gething is­sued a state­ment that said he had asked the Health­care In­spec­torate Wales (HIW) to con­duct an as­sess­ment of ABMU health board. He said: “In re­spect of ABMU specif­i­cally, I want to be sat­is­fied that ap­pro­pri­ate ac­tions have been iden­ti­fied by the health board and that their re­sponse is suf­fi­ciently ro­bust.

“I also wish to be as­sured there are ar­range­ments in place to mon­i­tor the em­bed­ding of any changes.

“I have asked that Health­care In­spec­torate Wales (HIW) un­der­take an in­de­pen­dent as­sess­ment to de­ter­mine:

If all ap­pro­pri­ate learn­ing has been iden­ti­fied from the find­ings in this re­view;

if the ac­tions be­ing taken are suf­fi­ciently wide-rang­ing and ro­bust;

if there are ef­fec­tive ar­range­ments in place for on­go­ing mon­i­tor­ing of the ac­tions taken, en­sur­ing they are em­bed­ded in prac­tice across the or­gan­i­sa­tion; and

if there is any fur­ther learn­ing that should be shared across the NHS in Wales.”

Mr Gething also said all NHS chief ex­ec­u­tives had been asked to pro­vide as­sur­ance that lessons have been learned from the re­port by Septem­ber 29.

Mr Gething said: “All NHS chief ex­ec­u­tives have been asked to re­view the find­ings of this re­port and pro­vide as­sur­ance that good gov­er­nance is in place in re­la­tion to pa­tient safety in­ci­dent re­port­ing, safe­guard­ing and em­ploy­ment prac­tices and that all ap­pro­pri­ate guid­ance is fol­lowed to pro­tect the safety of pa­tients, in­clud­ing their sex­ual safety.”

A spokes­woman for ABMU said: “We wel­come this re­view. We will be do­ing all we can to co-op­er­ate fully.”

Kris Wade, left, mur­dered his neigh­bour Chris­tine James, right


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