AM seeks views on mental health services

First published in News

Rebecca Evans, AM for Mid and West Wales, has asked Health Minister Mark Drakeford, to respond to the lack of in-patient mental health services in mid Wales, following claims some young people were offered beds as far away as Scotland.

Mrs Evans, who chairs the Assembly’s Cross Party Group on Mental Health, used Ministerial question time to highlight the lack of in-patient mental health facilities at Bronglais Hospital.

Mrs Evans described reports of people in mental distress being offered beds as far away as Scotland as “clearly unacceptable” and went on to ask Mr Drakeford to explore with Hywel Dda University Health Board how this occurred, and asked “what can be done to ensure this doesn’t happen again?”

In response, Health Minister, Mark Drakeford, said: “I have already asked the local crisis resolution team, the local health board itself and the Welsh Health Specialised Services Committee for any evidence they have that that sort of thing has happened.

“So far, their reports to me are that none of them have been able to identify a single case of a patient from that area being placed in Scotland.”

Mrs Evans has been scrutinising the Health Board on its mental health provision since its decision to close Afallon Ward in July 2012. The closure came in response to safety and sustainability concerns following a protracted period of recruitment difficulties for qualified clinicians.

Mrs Evans added: “I would like to hear about people’s recent experiences of mental health services in mid Wales. I am particularly keen to hear the experiences of people who have been unable to access in-patient mental health care in Bronglais, and would like to know where they were treated instead and what impact that had on their mental health and their recovery.”

Mrs Evans can be contacted at rebecca.evans@wales.gov.uk

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