North East Wales

Staff 'missed chances' to stop Wrexham man's suicide

Betsi Cadwaladr health board sign
Image caption The service run by Betsi Cadwaladr health board and Wrexham council were criticised following Mr Watson's death

A coroner has criticised a health board and council for missing chances to help a mental health patient who was later found hanged.

Daniel Watson, 29, was found dead at his home in Bersham Road, Wrexham, on 5 June last year.

Coroner John Gittins said there was a "risk future deaths will occur" unless changes were made.

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board and Wrexham council apologised to Mr Watson's family.

In a critical report, the coroner for north Wales said there had been lengthy delays in transferring Mr Watson's care from Flintshire to Wrexham community mental health services.

The coroner said this led to "missed opportunities" to improve his mental health.

'Areas for improvement'

An inquest into Mr Watson's death, held in December, recorded a conclusion of death by hanging and highlighted a "multitude of care and service delivery problems".

The coroner raised concerns evidence given by a social worker and a community psychiatric nurse at the inquest demonstrated a "complete lack of understanding and empathy in relation to these issues".

He said there needed to be significant improvements in the training of staff.

In a joint statement the health board and Wrexham council apologised to Mr Watson's family for the missed opportunities to improve his mental health.

It read: "The health board in partnership with Wrexham County Borough Council has identified areas for improvement in delivering community mental health services, and is working to achieve these improvements.

"The training of staff within community mental health teams has also been reviewed, with specific focus on assessing risk and escalating concerns about patients."

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