A CORONER has urged health chiefs to step up efforts to cut waiting lists for psychological therapies after hearing about a woman who worked for a drug and alcohol helpline.

Kimberley Jones, 43, was found dead at her flat in Carlton Grange, Grove Road, Wrexham, after taking a beta blocker overdose. A suicide note was found alongside unopened packets of medication.

An inquest at Wrexham Guildhall heard the telephone help operator suffered from depression and had twice tried to take her life with an overdose.

Her problems were linked to the break-up of her marriage.

North Wales East and Central coroner John Gittins concluded Mrs Jones had taken her own life on May 31 last year, saying: “Once she made her mind up it was a case of when and not if.”

Mr Gittins said while improved access to therapy might not have prevented her death, he would be monitoring Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board’s mental health treatment referrals over the next 12 months.

“This was a lady who was waiting for some considerable time for some treatment options to be available,” he said, “and I have to consider the time it takes for people to gain access to psychological therapies.

“I have been told things are changing and the board has provided statistics for referrals and I intend to keep them to task on them. I want things to get better.”

Dr Jean Ruddle, a consultant clinical psychologist, said Mrs Jones attended an anxiety management group but was waiting for more than three years for one-to-one psychotherapy.

But the clinician said there was a lack of funding for trained psychologists and up until February of last year the Adult Mental Health service did not have a full-time psychologist.