One year after Betsi Cadwaladr UHB was placed in special measures; Vaughan Gething has praised the positive progress made by the board.
The board was placed in special measures on 8 June 2015 following serious and outstanding concerns about the leadership, governance and progress in the health board over some time.
Vaughan Gething said:
“In the last year I have visited North Wales regularly to meet staff, patients and partners. I have been impressed by the commitment shown and the positive attitude and efforts of staff to meet the challenges they face and deliver the improvements needed.
“The health board has undertaken a comprehensive recruitment campaign to improve medical staffing levels. Good progress has also been made in making key appointments including a substantive Chief Executive, Medical Director, Director of Nursing and Director of Mental Health. This is welcome news.
“I am pleased that the outline business case for the Sub Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Centre - a state-of-the-art unit to care for very sick and premature babies - has been approved by us for progression to the full business case stage. This will help provide the best possible standards of care and clinical outcomes for mothers and babies across North Wales.
“The health board has taken action to improve its responsiveness to patient concerns and complaints, and has reviewed its governance processes. Engagement with both the public and staff has rightly been identified as a priority.
“It’s clear that the health board still faces challenges and has a lot of work to do before it can come out of special measures. I said last October that it would take some time for the health board to deliver the required improvements, but the signs of progress are encouraging. “Continuing improvement is essential to build on the foundations which have been laid in the last 12 months.”