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Helen Mary Jones AM bids to strengthen accountability in health service

MID and West AM Helen Mary Jones has put forward legislation to strengthen accountability in the Welsh NHS, following scandals such as Cwm Taf maternity services, and institutional abuse in Tawel Fan.

The Mid and West AM has introduced a Members’ Legislative Proposal to create a professional body for NHS managers in Wales.

Plaid Cymru Mid and West AM Helen Mary Jones, Shadow Health Minister said:

“With the recent scandal about maternity services in the Cwm Taf area no-one has been disciplined for allowing the situation to develop and continue. No-one has been held to account for the trauma to the mothers and the deaths of 26 children.

“This isn’t even the first time. Betsi Cadwaladr health board has been in special measures for four years following the Tawel Fan report of institutional abuse. An independent review of the Princess of Wales Hospital and the Neath Port Talbot Hospital in 2014 also highlighted serious and similar failings.

“What all these situations have in common is a failure on the part of the Labour led Welsh Government to hold senior managers to account. While front-line staff can be struck off and prevented from practice, managers appear to be able to move from one part of the service to another with impunity, with no sanction, regardless of how poorly they have performed. How can the Cwm Taf families and the front-line staff believe that there will be real change when, after four years of special measures, Betsi Cadwaladr continues to need intervention? This will not do.

“We need a professional body for NHS managers with the ability to strike managers off for poor performance. We need to ensure true independence of Healthcare Inspectorate Wales. We need a legal duty of candour to apply to all health professionals including managers, and a genuine, robust and transparent complaints system that supports parents and families. Some of this has been promised, none of it has been delivered.

“A culture persists where it appears that managers are never held responsible. This is not new and it must change. Wales needs real leadership, and it is only Plaid Cymru can provide the leadership the Welsh NHS needs. The current minister has proven incapable of doing this.”


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