The Welsh Labour Government has been accused of 'fantasy accounting' after the Health Minister released a statement today strongly praising Local Health Boards on "meeting their statutory financial target to break-even in 2012-13".
This is despite the fact that last December the Welsh Labour Government dished out a bailout totalling £82m of "contingency funding" for health boards. Only this month Bets Cadwaladr had been accused of abandoning waiting list initiatives and cancelling routine treatments in order to break even.
Kirsty Williams, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, commented:
"This is either a whole new level of spin or the Health Minister must be living in cloud cuckoo land. It's astonishing that he can claim that NHS Wales has broken even after Health Boards received a whopping £80 million pound bailout last December.
"Equally astonishing is that the Health Minister can herald this announcement as being down to good management. Only in the last week we have seen senior management figures at Betsi Cadwaladr resign after a damning review exposed the fact the health board abandoned waiting list initiatives and cancelled routine treatments in order to meet break even. How on earth can that be described as 'careful financial management'? That review made explicitly clear that the Health Board's current service model is neither clinically nor financially sustainable. The Health Minister mustn't stick his head in the sand over this."