The Welsh Liberal Democrats would extend the More Nurses Bill to include mental health wards, maternity wards and community nurses, Kirsty Williams AM has announced on Monday.
At a ceremony in Cardiff on Monday, the More Nurses Bill (also known as Nurse Staffing Levels Bill) will receive its seal of approval to become law. This will make Wales the first part of Europe with a legal duty to have sufficient nurse staffing levels on acute hospital wards. To build on this success, Kirsty Williams, has said that her party would extend the reach of this law to include other specialties, including mental health wards, maternity wards and community nurses.
Ahead of the Assembly election, this will be the Welsh Liberal Democrats' number one pledge on the NHS and forms part of the party’s three point plan for a better health service: More Nurses, better access to your GP, and improved mental health services.
The More Nurses Bill was a Private Members Bill, proposed by Kirsty Williams, which was first drawn out of a ballot in 2013. Assembly Members voted in favour of the Bill last month.
Speaking ahead of a visit to the University Hospital of Wales, Kirsty Williams, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, said:
“The Welsh Liberal Democrats will make Wales a world leader for patient care.
“Our bill, which becomes law today, will deliver more nurses on acute hospital wards. The Welsh Liberal Democrats have ensured that Wales becomes the first part of Europe with a legal duty for staffing levels. We will build on this success by extending the law to include mental health wards, maternity wards, and community nurses.
“In the forthcoming election, the Welsh Liberal Democrats will show that we have listened to people’s concerns. We all want NHS staff to have the time to care for our loved ones, which is why the Welsh Liberal Democrats will deliver safe staffing levels across the NHS. We’ll put more nurses in our hospitals and in our communities to deliver an NHS that works for you.”