We can express nothing but our shock and utmost disappointment at the failings set out in the report on the review of maternity services for Cwm Taf Health Board, published today by Health Minister Vaughan Gething AM. We are disappointed because the users of these important services in this Health Board deserved better than ‘a dysfunctional maternity service’. We have had meetings with the Health Minister and discussions with the Chair of the Health Board to discuss these important issues.
Our thoughts first and foremost are with the families affected by the failings in Cwm Taf maternity services.
The further interventions announced by the Minister today are necessary to provide us with the vital reassurances that this Health Board will effectively implement all the report’s recommendations.
Given the findings of the report, we very much welcome the ongoing role of external people in this process. This will help to reassure us about the response that is needed to address some of the failings of governance, leadership and clinical practice described in the report.
Everyone involved must be accountable for, and take lessons from, the issues set out in this review. Learning from such events is vital, so we also support the call for all Health Boards in Wales to check their own compliance with the recommendations in this report as a matter of urgency.
The report states that there are “large amounts of work required” in Cwm Taf in order to provide a safe and effective service. The immediate focus must therefore be on supporting everyone using these services at present.
We know there is a difficult period ahead, as this service works to improve care, provide the necessary reassurances on safety, and deliver important changes, without further destabilising the service. As the report states, the move of the consultant-led service to the site of the Prince Charles Hospital provides an opportunity to deliver the changes required.
We know that some of our constituents have legal representation in this matter, but if any of you would like to speak to us about the report, please contact our respective offices using the details below, or make use of the support services set up in response to the report and detailed at the end of this report.
You can read the report here, on the Welsh Government website: https://gov.wales/sites/default/files/publications/2019-04/review-of-maternity-services-at-cwm-taf-health-board_0.pdf
There are a number of support and information services available for anyone who is concerned or may have been affected:
- Sands bereavement support volunteers are providing emotional support to parents and partners attending the meeting with the Cwm Taf Health Board today, and anyone affected by the issues raised by the review can contact their helpline on 0808 164 3332.
Full details of Sands’ bereavement support services.
- The Health Board’s Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS) can be contacted for further information or personal advice. The team is available from 8.30am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday and can be contacted via telephone on 01685 724468 for Prince Charles Hospital or 01443 443039 for Royal Glamorgan Hospital. Their email address is: CTUHB_PALS@wales.nhs.uk.
- The Community Health Council (CHC) is able to provide you with independent advice. Their advocacy service is free and client-led, covering all aspects of NHS treatment and care. The local CHC office in Cwm Taf is contactable via email: email@example.com or via telephone: 01443 405 830 (during office hours). If you require further information please visit their website http://www.wales.nhs.uk/sitesplus/899/home
- Putting things Right is a service for anyone not happy with care or treatment provided by or for the NHS in Wales http://www.wales.nhs.uk/ourservices/publicaccountability/puttingthingsright