Scan­dal-hit men­tal health ward re­port is de­layed

Western Mail - - NEWS -

THE pub­li­ca­tion of a re­port into the way pa­tients were treated on a scan­dal-hit men­tal health ward is fac­ing ma­jor de­lays, it has been re­vealed.

Ys­byty Glan Cl­wyd’s Tawel Fan ward was at the cen­tre of con­tro­versy in 2015 when an in­ves­ti­ga­tion found that pa­tients re­ceived “shock­ing, in­ex­cus­able and un­ac­cept­able” treat­ment.

It found pa­tients suf­fered “in­sti­tu­tional abuse” on the men­tal health ward and were the vic­tims of “a lack of pro­fes­sional, dig­ni­fied and com­pas­sion­ate care” by em­ploy­ees prior to its clo­sure in De­cem­ber 2013.

One fam­ily mem­ber in the re­port even de­scribed the ward as “a zoo” where pa­tients had been “cap­tured”.

But the Health and So­cial Care Ad­vi­sory Ser­vice (HASCAS), which was com­mis­sioned by Betsi Cad­wal­adr Univer­sity Health Board to in­ves­ti­gate the mat­ter, has been heav­ily crit­i­cised for de­lays in pub­lish­ing its own re­port.

As part of the re­port its au­thor, Donna Ock­enden, is cur­rently re­view­ing gov­er­nance ar­range­ments in older per­sons’ men­tal health ser­vices in the health board.

The re­port was due to be pub­lished on March 8, but at a meet­ing on Mon­day, Fe­bru­ary 12, the health board con­firmed this would not hap­pen and could not give a re­vised date.

Gary Do­herty, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Betsi Cad­wal­adr Univer­sity Health Board, said: “Good progress has been made by those lead­ing the HASCAS in­ves­ti­ga­tion and gov­er­nance re­view.

“The gath­er­ing of ev­i­dence for both re­ports is com­plete, and the au­thors are in the fi­nal stages of writ­ing their re­ports.

“How­ever, the com­ple­tion, and con­se­quen­tially, the pub­li­ca­tion of the re­ports will be later than an­tic­i­pated in the time­line pub­lished in the BCU Board pa­per in Novem­ber due to re­cent ill­ness among both the HASCAS and Donna Ock­enden teams.

“Both teams are do­ing all they can to min­imise the de­lay, while, of course, main­tain­ing the in­tegrity of their re­ports.

“Con­struc­tive dis­cus­sions be­tween all par­ties are un­der way to agree a re­vised, re­al­is­tic time­line for pub­li­ca­tion.”

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