Plaid Cymru Assembly Member Simon Thomas has been angered by the lack of action taken by the Welsh Government to ensure Hywel Dda Health Board is given appropriate and consistent support.
During the first First Minister’s Questions of the new term, The Mid and West AM asked the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Well-Being and Sport Vaughan Gething for an urgent statement on Hywel Dda Health Board in light of its escalation to targeted intervention status.
The Plaid Cymru AM was keen to push the Cabinet Secretary to answer for the failings of the Health Board:
“This leaves 4 of the 7 main health boards dealing with primary and secondary care in some sort of intervention from the Government. It was the Labour Government that decided to pass the Health Finance Act in a bid to provide the Health boards with far more certainty on the future, but Hywel Dda is yet to see an improvement in efficiency.
The Mid and West AM asked the Cabinet Secretary to identify the problems that faced the Health Board but was unimpressed with his answer:
“The Cabinet Secretary spoke broadly about workforce planning and financial problems, but was unable to tell the Assembly where the responsibility for the deficiencies lay. The Labour-led Government have failed in its duty to give the Health Boards consistent and effective support, which explains the severity of the issues faced by Hywel Dda.
“Additionally, the Cabinet Secretary refused to explain whether Trevor Purt was still being paid by NHS Wales. The Ex-Chief Executive of both the Hywel Dda and Betsi Cadwaladr Health Boards seems to be still being paid by the Welsh tax payer, even though both Health Boards are in need of serious support after his management.
“It seems that Labour are happy to continue to pay for poor performance, while patients continue to suffer thanks to rudderless leadership.”
Last week, it was announced that Hywel Dda Health Board is one of three Welsh Health Boards to be placed under an increased level of scrutiny and control by the Welsh Government due to doubts about their ability to tackle their challenges.
The ‘targeted intervention’ stage is one level below being put in Special Measures.
Once announced, the Assembly Member for Mid and West Wales Simon Thomas shared his dismay at the announcement:
“The Labour Government has a track record of mismanaging our NHS and therefore it is no surprise that these steps are being taken. From missing Ambulance waiting and Cancer Treatment targets to closing local GP Services – Labour have continually failed the people of Wales.”
“Past, Present, Future, The Labour Welsh Government will continue to fail our Health Boards and patients due to a lack of will, determination and imagination.”