MS calls for action after ‘damning report’ for Blaenau Gwent mental health unit
A Plaid Cymru MS has called for action after a specialist mental health unit in Blaenau Gwent received a critical report following an unannounced inspection by Healthcare Inspectorate Wales (HIW).
Peredur Owen Griffiths MS said it was vital that the deficiencies found at Ysbyty’r Tri Chwm were rectified as swiftly as possible for the sake of patients.
HIW’s report was published after a surprise visit to the facility – which caters for patients over 65 – in August of this year.
Inspectors said they “could not be assured that the health, safety and welfare of patients, staff and visitors was being actively promoted and protected. In addition, potential risks of harm were not being identified, monitored and where possible, reduced or prevented.”
HIW also found that handrails were missing in ward corridors with exposed sharp edges and that call bells were positioned where they could not be reached by patients lying down.
Patient restraints were also found to have been conducted by staff who were not fully trained in the appropriate technique.
The MS for South Wales East said: “I am concerned by the findings of the report. The deficiencies highlighted by HIW show that improvements need to be made as soon as possible for the sake of patients.
“It is unacceptable that handrails were missing and that some patients were unable to call for staff if they needed attention.
“Unless rectified, such faults could pose a risk of serious injury or death to the frail and vulnerable patients treated at the facility.
“Some of the faults were identified during another inspection five years ago and they were found to still be waiting to be fixed. That is not on – I expect the failings identified in this report will be sorted out swiftly.”
Peredur added: “It was heartening to read that the inspection found that staff were treating patients with respect, were polite, supportive, and helpful.
“Nurses were also found to be knowledgeable regarding individual patient needs and good professional relationships had been established to provide better care for patients.”
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