South West Wales

Nurse sacked for breaching patient confidentiality

Nurses in hospital Image copyright Thinkstock

A nurse has been sacked for looking at patients' private hospital records in west Wales.

Hywel Dda University Health Board, which runs services in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire, has apologised to everyone affected.

The board said it was shocked by the breach of confidentiality.

The number of patients affected has not been released but they have been assured no changes were made to their records.

Board chief executive Steve Moore said there was no evidence the nurse, who has not been named, did anything other than view the records.

The breach was discovered late last year and led to a review by the board, which serves about 370,000 people.

It has now asked the information commissioner to carry out an independent investigation.

Mr Moore said he sincerely apologised "a former member of staff, whilst in a position of trust, has acted in this way".

He added: "This should not have happened and I know that our own staff, like our board, will be shocked at this situation, especially our wonderful nurses who hold patient confidentiality at the core of their values."

A free helpline has been set up for patients. The number is 0800 804 8787, and it is open until 21 July between 1700 BST and 21:00 Monday to Friday and 09:00 to 16:00 at weekends.

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