Out of Hours: Time to Care highlights a number of cases investigated by the
Ombudsman over the past five years that showed inadequate standards of care
given to patients in hospitals across Wales outside of ‘normal’ working hours.

In addition to a review, the report highlights other areas for further consideration including better supervision of junior staff, prioritisation of inpatient care and improved handovers.

Themes arising from the cases include:

  • Inadequate consultant cover across seven days
  • Delays in medical review and lack of consultant review
  • Lack of senior supervision for junior medical staff
  • Failure to meet pre-existing standards of care and established guidelines.

Public Services Ombudsman for Wales, Nick Bennett, said:

“While the cases highlighted in our report are not necessarily typical of the majority of hospital admissions in Wales, they do not appear to be isolated incidents and an independent systemic review would confirm any emerging patterns or inconsistencies in quality of care.

“I’m hopeful that lessons can be learnt from this report and that ultimately this will result in better public services in Wales and a reduction in complaints.

“A recent OECD report on the NHS in Wales emphasised the importance of patient voice and I think it’s imperative we highlight the experiences of service-users to ensure mistakes are not repeated.”