Health board faces care probe

ITV News learns the Health Minister has ordered a review into Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board. It follows accusations of neglect of a patient at Princess of Wales Hospital.

Minister orders inquiry into ABMU Health Board

Health Minister Mark Drakeford has ordered an independent inquiry into one of the biggest health boards in Wales.

The Minister has acted after the death of grandmother Lilian Williams.

Abertawe Bro Morgannwg had apologised for what her family say was appalling care and the fact that the promise of a high level investigation into it in 2010 never happened.

Tonight ITV News can reveal new information which her family says goes to the top of the Welsh NHS.

Our Health Reporter Rob Osborne reports.

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ABMU Health Board responds to neglect investigation

Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board says it welcomes the Welsh Government's review, and says another external review is already scheduled to begin next week.

ABM University Health Board already has a number of robust and pro-active measures underway to maximise the delivery of safe and high quality care for patients at the Princess of Wales Hospital; and already these actions are producing positive results.

Up to date mortality rate figures indicate that the hospital is now in line with other hospitals in Wales. In addition, mortality rates for patients with fractured hips - which were higher than expected - now compare with the best in the UK.

We have also had some very positive feedback from patients and relatives.

A spokesperson says a 'Quality and Safety Programme' has been set up at the Princess of Wales Hospital, adding that a nursing team from the hospital have recently won a UK-wide award.

The external review being arranged by Welsh Government also involves Neath Port Talbot Hospital.

We accept that there were issues around the care of an individual patient while she was an inpatient at Neath Port Talbot Hospital for a brief time and these clearly must be addressed.

However there are not high numbers of complaints about Neath Port Hospital generally, and the main category involves access/appointment issues rather than poor care.

– ABM University Health Board spokesperson

Welsh Conservatives: patient neglect review 'falls short'

While an investigation into standards of care in Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board is welcome following the appalling neglect of an elderly and vulnerable patient, this falls far short of the full Keogh-style inquiry the Welsh NHS needs.

We urgently need a robust Wales-wide inquiry into standards of patient care and high death rates in our hospitals to identify failings and put them right to prevent another Mid Staffs scandal.

Carwyn Jones’ Labour Government must listen to calls for a Keogh-style inquiry from frontline NHS staff, respected health campaigners like Ann Clwyd and Welsh patients to prevent any more vulnerable people from suffering horrific neglect and mistreatment.

– Darren Millar AM, Shadow Minister for Health