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North Wales health board will "not contest" judicial review

Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board chiefs say they are "sorry" for worry caused. Credit: ITV Wales

Betsi Cadwaladr health board have confirmed they will not contest a judicial review. The case was due to be heard next week. In a U-turn, the board said they would instead hold a consultation on the future of maternity services.

In a statement Simon Dean, interm chief executive of the health board said their intention now was to seek the views of staff and the public on options for their maternity services in the short term.

We all acknowledge what a difficult period of uncertainty and worry this has been for our staff and patients, for which we are very sorry. We remain extremely concerned about the fragility of the service, which is still short of the required number of doctors across north Wales.

We need to be confident of a robust, safe, fully staffed obstetric service across north Wales that is sustainable for the future. We know there are differing opinions about how best we can achieve this and there are no easy answers.”

– Simon Dean, Interim chief executive, Betsi Cadwaladr UHB

Health board boss sets 100-day target for improvement

Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board was put in special measures earlier this month.

The new man in charge of Wales' largest health board has given managers 100 days to start making improvements.

Simon Dean was appointed to lead Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board earlier this month, after the health provider was put in special measures and Trevor Purt, the board's chief executive, was suspended.

At a briefing this morning, Mr Dean said he's asked for a 100-day plan from managers for service improvements, each setting a milestone by which progress can be judged and show that 'rapid progress' is being made.

Mr Dean said key words for the future of the embattled health board are 'clarity, focus, pace and urgency.' He has met with relatives of those treated on the Tawel Fan ward, and said: "We will hold people to account where accountability is required."


Staff at 'zoo like' psychiatric unit to be reported

Ten members of staff from a psychiatric unit where patients were claimed by families to have been treated “like animals” have been reported to their professional bodies.

Credit: ITV Wales News

Wales' First Minister Carwyn Jones has promised that disciplinary action will follow a damning report claiming “institutionalised abuse” at the Tawel Fan ward of the Ablett Unit, at Glan Clwyd Hospital, near Rhyl.

The Crown Prosecution Service has decided that no action will be taken against anyone. But a report to next week’s meeting of the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board says that seven employees have been referred to the Nursing and Midwifery Council and three to the General Medical Council.

The Board’s chief executive Professor Trevor Purt has already described the treatment of some patients as “shocking, inexcusable and unacceptable.”

Report gives family's accounts of care on health ward

The family of one patient on Tawel Fan ward of the Ablett Unit at Glan Clwyd Hospital described what they saw as 'like a zoo'.

And it was like when you go in a zoo and see animals that have been captured there for a long time and that's all they've got to do is walk around and around…

– Family of one patient

The report also details one occasion when a patient was complaining of discomfort in their arm. The report says the response from staff was 'Oh [the patient] did complain of a painful arm, but we didn't take much notice really.'

After being taken to A&E, a broken wrist was diagnosed.


Health chief 'extremely sorry' for letting patients down

An independent report into concerns over patient treatment and care on the Ablett Unit at Glan Clwyd Hospital has been published.

The Chief Executive of the health board said: " I am extremely sorry that we let our vulnerable patients and their families down so badly."

We are making public the independent report into the care and treatment of the patients on the ward prior to the ward’s closure in December 2013.

We have prioritised a range of work to prevent anything like this from happening again.

On behalf of the Health Board, I am extremely sorry that we let our vulnerable patients and their families down so badly.

– Professor Trevor Purt, Betsi Cadwaladr UHB

Update expected on investigation into north Wales mental health unit

Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board is expected to provide an update later on the investigation into the treatment and care of patients on the Ablett Unit at Glan Clwyd Hospital.

Credit: ITV Wales News

The mental health unit was closed in December 2013 after 'serious concerns' were raised by staff and families.

North Wales Police launched an investigation and the Health Board ordered an external independent review. Several members of staff were suspended.

Review to be published after mental health patient went on to commit murder

Deyan Deyanov was released from one of the hospitals before the murder in Tenerife.

An independent review will be published later into decisions made by Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, after a mental health patient released from one of its hospitals, went on to commit murder.

Deyan Deyanov, who had paranoid schizophrenia, attacked 60-year-old Jennifer Mills-Westley while she was shopping in the resort of Los Cristianos in the Canary Islands in 2011.

Grandmother Jennifer Mills-Westley was killed on the resort in 2011.

The 30-year-old had been admitted to the psychiatric unit at Glan Clwyd Hospital in Bodelwyddan in 2010, but was released in October that year.

He was sentenced to 20 years in a secure psychiatric unit, after being convicted of murder by a jury.

The independent report was commissioned by the Welsh Government after Ms Mills-Westley's two daughters pressed for an inquiry.

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