A complaint was made by the sister of (anonymised) Mr X about the length of time he had waited for diagnostic and investigative tests for his congenital heart defect (ACHD), which resulted in a prolonged wait for necessary surgery.
Miss X also complained that the Health
Board failed to properly advise her on concerning symptoms to look out for which would have indicated a serious deterioration in Mr X’s condition. Sadly, Mr X died before the surgery took place.
The Ombudsman found that:
Nick Bennett, Public Services Ombudsman for Wales, said:
“On the balance of probabilities, had Mr X received treatment earlier, it would have saved his life. The Welsh Government Referral to Treatment (RTT) target is 26 weeks. It is completely unacceptable that he waited nearly twice this time.
“I have made several recommendations including that the Health Board ensure Cardiology clinicians provide appropriate advice to ACHD patients so that they are aware of life threatening
symptoms to look out for.
“I am pleased that the Health Board has agreed to my recommendations and I welcome steps that it is taking to address waiting times for patients with ACHD; however it is sadly too late for Mr X to benefit from any such improvements.”