Upheld in whole or in part
Non-public interest report issued: complaint upheld
Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board
Mrs J complained about the actions of the Learning Disability Team (“the LD Team”) of the Health Board in response to her request to provide assistance to move her sister, Miss M, from the upstairs of her home to a new home with Mrs J and her family in April 2021. Mrs J also complained that her complaint had been investigated by a member of staff who was the subject of her complaint.
The Ombudsman found that, although the LD Team’s initial assessment and care plan (to work with Miss M to reduce her anxiety with a view to her going downstairs) had been appropriate, there did not seem to have been any urgency and the situation was allowed to “drift” for far too long. The LD Team should have ensured Mrs J understood that they could not physically help move Miss M, but Mrs J was not told this until 2 weeks before the proposed date for the move, a date which had been agreed with the Health Board. Although the Health Board’s response to Mrs J’s complaint had been reviewed by managers before being sent to Mrs J, the fact that the author of the report was shown as the manager about whom she had complained meant that the investigation appeared to be less than objective. The Ombudsman upheld the complaint. She recommended that the Health Board apologise to Mrs J and make her a payment of £500 in recognition of the distress caused; she also recommended that members of the LD Team reflect on the report and on what lessons could be learned. The Health Board agreed to implement the recommendations.