A complaint was made to the Ombudsman by the widow of (anonymised) “Mr P” about the care he received in the final weeks of his life, at Glan Clwyd Hospital, Denbighshire.

The Ombudsman found that:

  •  The course of clinical treatment offered to Mr P at that stage of his illness was not reasonable (given its slow response rate) in comparison with a treatment
    he could have been offered which may have prolonged his life expectancy even for a short time.
  • Mr P was discharged home without proper arrangements in place.
  • The discharge lacked effective communication with both Mr and Mrs P, and raised serious concerns surrounding controlled medication.
  • Mrs P had to wait longer than was reasonable for a complaint response from the Health Board.

Nick Bennett, Public Services Ombudsman for Wales, said:

“This investigation has identified a catalogue of failings that I am extremely
concerned about. Quite clearly, aspects of this patient’s care have been wholly

“These raise some broad issues that need to be addressed including lack of beds for terminally ill patients, hurried and ill-considered discharge of seriously ill patients, poor quality of documentation and diagnostic issues.

“I have issued a number of recommendations that Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board has agreed to implement, and my office will be following up to make sure those recommendations are fully complied with.”