Select Committee on Welsh Affairs Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence



Memorandum submitted by the Welsh NHS Confederation

  As you will know, in the past the Welsh NHS Confederation and its predecessor bodies have been very pleased to provide evidence to the Welsh Affairs Committee.

  As a membership organisation it is vital that our policies are anchored in the views of our members ie Health Authorities, NHS Trusts and Local Health Groups in Wales, and as a consequence we have consulted them on the issues covered in the draft Bill. On this occasion there is general support for the proposed measures and no major concerns are being raised. We therefore feel that it would be inappropriate to provide oral evidence to the Committee on these issues.

  However, there is a general consensus as follows which constitutes our written evidence to the Committee:


  The continued existence of CHCs in Wales is supported. Patient and public involvement in the NHS is vital and it is important that the organisational structures in place support and encourage this involvement. This principle of wide-ranging involvement also applies to membership of the CHCs themselves, which should represent the full spectrum of patient and public views.


  The establishment of the Centre is welcomed as an important step in co-ordinating public health skills across Wales, and taking forward the health improvement agenda. As this is a new body, it should be funded with new money rather than at the expense of hard-pressed, existing health resources.


  We support the establishment of Health Professions Wales (HPW) as an Assembly sponsored public body with a flexible role and remit. HPW will play a key role in the Welsh Assembly Government strategic approach to health in Wales, strengthening and investing in the health workforce at all levels and across sectors.

  For the reasons explained above, we feel that we are not in a position to provide further constructive evidence and respectfully, with the Committee's agreement, wish to decline the invitation on this occasion to provide oral evidence to the Committee. We would, however, very much welcome the opportunity in the future to provide evidence to the Welsh Affairs Committee on health service related issues in Wales.

Richard Thomas

Director, The Welsh NHS Confederation

7 June 2002

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