Upheld in whole or in part
Non-public interest report issued: complaint upheld
Aneurin Bevan University Health Board
Miss J complained about the care and treatment she received from Aneurin Bevan University Health Board (“the Health Board”). She was concerned that after the breakdown of her therapeutic relationship with the Principal Psychologist in July 2018, the Health Board failed to accommodate her request that the Principal Psychologist should not have any further involvement in the management of her care. She also complained that the Health Board’s management of her mental health treatment failed to take proper account of her individual needs and background.
The investigation found that there was an undue delay in considering Miss J’s request for access to individual therapy without the oversight of the Principal Psychologist, and that this was a service failure. Whilst this would not have allowed Miss J to access appropriate treatment any sooner, the lack of clarity over several months was a source of distress and uncertainty to Miss J, which amounted to an injustice. Accordingly, this complaint was upheld. The investigation found that the Health Board had offered appropriate treatment, taking proper account of Miss J’s individual needs and background. That aspect of the complaint was, therefore, not upheld.
The Health Board agreed to the Ombudsman’s recommendations that it should apologise to Miss J and make a payment of £125 to her in respect of the distress and uncertainty she experienced. It also agreed to adopt a policy for all Community Mental Health Teams detailing how care should be managed when there is a breakdown of trust between a patient and a senior clinical manager.