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In Need of Care: Labour-Plaid’s NHS Failure

November 10, 2010 12:38 PM

In advance of a Welsh Liberal Democrat-led debate on the NHS in Wales, the Welsh Liberal Democrats have today published a new report, In Need of Care, exposing the failures of the Labour-Plaid Governments stewardship of the NHS.

In Need of Care highlights a catalogue of failure:

Commenting on the report, Veronica German AM, Shadow Health Minister, said:

"Since becoming an Assembly member just six months ago, I have been shocked at the level of wasteful spending and inefficiency that is going unchecked within the NHS. NHS staff work tirelessly on our behalves and we all owe them a debt of gratitude. But in talking to frontline staff working in the NHS, it is clear to me that the NHS in Wales is being let down by the Labour-Plaid Government.

"For all their talk about investment, the Labour-Plaid government has presided over escalating costs and declining standards. It is simply unacceptable that in Wales we have an NHS that costs more per head than England but delivers worse outcomes."

Kirsty Williams AM, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, said:

"The failures highlighted in this report go far beyond issues of funding. The Welsh Liberal Democrats are lifting the lid on an NHS in Wales that is rife with waste and inefficiency.

"Up and down the country, families and businesses are learning to do more with less. It is the job of Government to ensure that the NHS does likewise. So now is not the time to make foolish and insubstantial promises that the NHS funding should be ring-fenced. The NHS needs an approach that is more mature and thinking that is more joined up than that. The priority for Welsh Liberal Democrats is to make the efficiency savings in the NHS that allow us to protect and improve frontline services."

ENDS

Notes to Editors:

Item 6: Welsh Liberal Democrats Debate (60 mins)

NDM4582 Peter Black (South Wales West)

The National Assembly for Wales:

1. Believes the NHS is of crucial importance in promoting and maintaining the health of people in Wales.

2. Notes that:

(a) evidence given to the finance committee suggests that that there is up to £1bn of the NHS budget "that we are not utilising appropriately";

(b) the work undertaken by McKinsey and Co. concluded that Government strategies are financially unaffordable, lack accountability and that there is a lack of capacity to deliver them; and

(c) evidence from the Nuffield Trust suggests that healthcare is poorer in Wales than many parts of England, despite higher levels of funding.

3. Believes it is essential that the Welsh Assembly Government should continually seek to deliver improved value for money, stronger leadership and year on year improvements in health services for patients.

4. Calls for the Welsh Assembly Government to:

(a) take urgent measures to ensure more effective NHS spending, stronger strategic leadership and improved patient outcomes, and

(b) urgently investigate how much of the £1 billion that we are not using appropriately could be redirected towards frontline services and to report back to the Assembly on progress in achieving this goal.