WASTE WATCHERS – Day 25: £12 million wasted each year on locum hospital doctors

April 28, 2011 1:42 PM

The Welsh Liberal Democrats will expose an example of the waste and inefficiency of Labour and Plaid Cymru in government on each day of the Welsh general election campaign.

In February, it was revealed by the Welsh Liberal Democrats that the Welsh NHS spends, on average, £12 million each year on locum hospital doctors. While there are occasions where it is appropriate to use locum doctors, there are approximately 275 junior doctor vacancies across Wales that need filling. The NHS' dependence on locum doctors is an ineffective use of NHS money and can lead to unsafe services.

Veronica German South Wales East Assembly Candidate said:

"It's quite shocking that the Labour-Plaid government is allowing money to be wasted like this instead of getting to grips with filling those posts across Wales with doctors. There are, of course, occasions when it's perfectly appropriate to use locum doctors, for instance to provide cover for leave or sickness. However, a large amount of money is being spent on locums to cover full-time positions

"The effect of using locums on such a large scale like this is an ineffective use of NHS resources and often, an overreliance on locums can lead to unsafe services.

"When every family, charity and business is having to make every pound stretch that little bit further, Wales needs a government that does the same. Labour and Plaid Cymru have turned waste, incompetence and inefficiency into an art form."

ENDS

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