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Friday, July 5, 2013

Health shake-up consultation should be done again, says AM

NORTH Wales Assembly Member Mark Isherwood has called for the controversial consultation on the future of health services in North Wales to be revisited following the recent identified management failings in Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board.
Mr Isherwood raised the matter during an urgent question in the Assembly Chamber this week.
He also called for a reassessment of the Welsh Government’s decision in the last Assembly to scrap the Independent Review that formed the second stage of the complaints procedure for patients and relatives, and asked for assurances  of ‘no expensive pay offs’ to senior figures standing down.
He said: “As you will be aware, the report identified management failings contributing to significant risks with hospital infections, operations being delayed and waiting lists allowed to grow.
"Given that matters such as these have been populating my casework inbox, and, I am sure, those of many other North Wales Members, for many years, will you revisit the Welsh Government’s decision in the last Assembly to scrap the independent review that formed the second stage of the complaints procedure and ensured that complaints could be scrutinised properly?
"Will you revisit the recent consultation that campaigners described as a ‘sham’?
"In Flint, they said that the figures being picked were those that the health board wanted. Will you assure us that there will not be expensive pay-offs to senior persons who may have to stand down as a consequence of this report?”
Health Minister Mark Drakeford told Mr Isherwood that “the report does not lead in any way to a re-opening of those matters that were agreed last year between the health board and the community health council. I have no intention of revisiting those matters on the basis of a report that did not address them." 

* In another story, responding to the Welsh Labour Health Minister’s praise for local health boards for breaking even at the end of the financial year, Aled Roberts, North Wales Welsh Liberal Democrat AM said: “This praise of local health boards meeting their financial requirements is a slap in the face for many patients in North Wales.
"Just last week, a controversial report made it clear that the only way Betsi Cadwaladr was able to make it to the end of the financial year was by allowing waiting lists to grow and cancelling routine operations.
“The Welsh Labour Government cannot see the people and the suffering behind meeting targets. Cancelling operations and allowing waiting lists to grow is not an acceptable way to run a health service.”

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