‘A record-breaking Welsh NHS but for all the wrong reasons’

Speaking at the Welsh Conservative Party Conference in Llangollen on Saturday, Acting Welsh Conservative Shadow Health spokesperson Darren Millar AM, called on the Welsh Labour Government to take accountability for the failings in the Welsh NHS after 20 years of Welsh Labour rule in Cardiff Bay.

Darren also launched the Welsh Conservatives’ five-point vision to empower people and improve accountability in the NHS.

Under the proposals a Welsh Conservative Government would end ministerial appointments to health boards and introduce elected health commissioners accountable directly to the public. The Welsh Conservatives would introduce a ‘Duty to Disclose’ for all NHS staff to record when things go wrong, putting a duty on them to report details to senior management and the Healthcare Inspectorate, which would receive a radical overhaul to make the inspectorate independent of Welsh Government and to give it new powers to intervene earlier when problems are identified.

The proposals go further to establish a Welsh NHS Leadership Council, which would require all senior managers and executives to register with and if found responsible for serious failings within their department would be deemed incompetent and removed from the register, ending the cycle of poor managers moving around the NHS in Wales.

Finally, a Welsh Conservative Government would enhance and invest in Patient Watchdogs by protecting the independence of Wales’ Community Health Councils and increasing their funding to support their vital work as patient watchdogs in improving standards within our NHS.

Commenting ahead of his address, Darren said:

“The NHS in Wales is breaking records, but breaking records for all the wrong reasons.

“The hardworking and dedicated staff in our Welsh NHS are being let down by this Welsh Labour Government who for 20 years have failed to take accountability and responsibility for our health service. They even cut the NHS in Wales by £800 million, the only Government in the UK to do so in modern times.

“Following the Cwm Taf maternity services scandal this week, it is shocking that five out of seven health boards in Wales are in special measures of some kind. The Welsh Labour Government needs to take responsibility and it is time for the Health Minister Vaughan Gething to resign.

“Only the Welsh Conservatives will empower patients and empower staff to create a Welsh NHS that the people of Wales deserve and that for so long Welsh Labour have neglected and taken for granted.”