Calls for public inquiry into Welsh NHS after hospital checks

17 October 2014

Calls for public inquiry into Welsh NHS after hospital checks

Repeated calls are being made to commence a public inquiry into the Welsh NHS after spot checks had found that problems relating to medical mistreatment were discovered amongst 20 hospitals. The checks came after particular criticism over the care of elderly patients and mismanaged medication.

Mistreatment.com has specialist teams dealing with mistreatment and care relating to elderly patients and the problems that can sometimes arise, such as pressure sores, dehydration and incorrect medicine management.

The spot checks found that the management of medicine was a particularly poor area of medical mistreatment amongst the hospitals. If medicines are not managed properly, existing patient conditions can worsen, with existing illnesses and symptoms being exacerbated and mismanaged. Additionally, dealing with pressure ulcers for elderly patients must be timely where time is of the essence. Speaking to BBC Radio Wales Health Minister Mark Drakeford pointed out general care was good but that in "one area, that of medicine management, there are things we need to do to make sure medicines are properly stored; that security for medicines is improved."

"Now we'll take action across Wales to make sure that happens."

Mr Drakeford had originally published a report after a troubling BBC Wales investigation in July 2013 which found failings in the care of Lilian Williams, 82, from Porthcawl, at two hospitals run by Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board (ABMU). Spot checks were then instigated after the new report was released.

In Thursday's report, Learning from Trusted To Care, the investigators said: "We did find areas for improvement with medicines management on wards throughout NHS Wales. The main issues we have found related to the safe and secure storage of medicines."

Darren Millar, the Conservatives' shadow health minister, said: "Spot checks need to be a permanent feature of the Welsh hospital inspection regime but they will never replace the need for a much wider inquiry ... so we can get to grips with the roots of the problems that are manifesting in our health service across Wales and deal with them once and for all."

Mrs Williams's son Gareth, founder of the ABMU Victim Support Group, also called for a wider review, claiming the two reports did not go far enough to address "the serious concerns that we have".

Patient Care Options

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