Welsh News

  1. Independent inquiry needed into health board’s delay in raising sex abuse allegations, says Andrew RT Davies Mon, 21/08/2017 - 14:03

    A Welsh health board failed to carry out adequate pre-employment safety checks on a member of staff who was later alleged to have sexually assaulted vulnerable patients, an internal review has found.

    Kris Wade worked in the Learning and Disabilities Directorate of Abertawe Bro Morganwwg University Health Board as a nursing assistant.

    He was based in Rowan House, Cardiff, when the allegations were made. Wade later went on to murder his next door neighbour, Christine James, in a 'sexually motivated' attack.

    The Welsh Conservative leader has called for an independent inquiry, saying that an internal investigation can never “wholly satisfy” the questions that remain as to the extent the health board could have acted more quickly.

    Andrew RT Davies said: “The report raises some serious concerns around ABMU’s handling of shocking allegations of patient abuse at the hands of a staff member, who ought never to have been allowed to work with vulnerable adults.

    “A laissez faire attitude to safeguarding and a culture of stubborn unwilling to take seriously the testimony of patients and staff members enabled Kris Wade to act out his urges with impunity for far too long.

    “Given the enormity of the issues raised, an internal desktop review could never wholly satisfy the questions that remain over the true scale of the abuse, what went wrong, what lessons should be learned, and to what extent the health board could have acted more quickly.

    “I would urge the Welsh Government not to delay in undertaking an independent inquiry into this case.”

    /Ends

  2. New Down’s Syndrome test “great news”, but shame it’s taken nine years Mon, 21/08/2017 - 14:01

    Welsh Conservatives have welcomed plans to introduce a safer and more accurate test for Down’s syndrome on the Welsh NHS.

    Responding to news of a non-invasive test prenatal testing (NIPT) roll-out within the antenatal screening programme in Wales, Angela Burns AM, Welsh Conservative Shadow Health Secretary, said:

    “This is great news for pregnant women across Wales, who can now access the safest screening tests available.

    “It’s a shame, however, that it’s taken the Welsh Government nearly nine years to comply with NICE’s recommendations.

    “For far too long Welsh patients have faced a cruel dilemma: either to go private or face an out-dated and invasive test on the NHS.

    “Now at least there’s one less things for parents to worry about.”

    /Ends

  3. ISHERWOOD: Welsh Government to blame over police training cash gap claims Fri, 18/08/2017 - 15:08

    The Welsh Government is to blame over police training cash gap claims according to the Welsh Conservative Shadow Secretary for Communities, Mark Isherwood AM.

     

    Responding to comments made by Plaid Cymru’s North Wales commissioner Arfon Jones - who chairs the All-Wales Policing Group - and the Labour Government in Cardiff Bay, Mr Isherwood said:

     

    “Once again, the Welsh Labour-led Government has been caught bang to rights, trying to avert blame from a potential crisis of its own making by pointing the finger at Westminster.

     

    “All police forces in Wales pay the apprenticeship levy, and those funds are passed back to the Welsh Government through an arrangement agreed with HM Treasury. Contrary to Welsh Government claims, the Welsh public purse is set to receive a net benefit of nearly £22 million.

     

    “Only back in February in the Senedd, I warned the Skills Minister that because her policies prevented Forces in Wales, unlike those in England, from accessing the Apprenticeship Levy through its new digital account, and therefore from contributing to the College of Policing, this would cost Welsh Forces over £2million annually.

     

    “With typical Labour bluster and arrogance, she had told me that the Welsh Government would instead ‘strike up a grant or contract arrangement’, but that the ‘Commissioners’ don’t probably know the exact detail of it’.

     

    “This has clearly not materialised and the Welsh Government has only itself to blame for its incompetence and failure to act on warnings and pledges made months previously.”

     

  4. BURNS: Six-month plus waits for diagnosis and therapy rise 21% Fri, 18/08/2017 - 10:20

    Six-month plus waits for diagnosis and therapy rise 21%

    The number of people waiting more than six months for diagnosis and therapy on the Welsh NHS has increased by 21% since March.

    For the month of June – the most up-to-date records available – Welsh Government data shows that 691 people waited over 24 weeks for diagnostic and therapy services compared to 502 in March.

    Over the same period, people waiting between 14 and 24 weeks rose by 39%, with 1,874 patients waiting in June against 1,141 in March.

    The health board worst affected by this rise was Aneurin Bevan, who in a four-month window saw a 67% increase in the number of patients waiting longer than six months for diagnosis and therapy, and a 39% increase in those waiting between 14 and 24 weeks.

    Patients waiting more than six months for a colonoscopy across Wales’ seven health boards grew by a fifth, while those seeking occupational therapy rose to 155 – up 32% from March.

    Commenting on the data, Welsh Conservative Shadow Health Secretary Angela Burns AM, said:

    “Behind every statistic is a personal story of unacceptable delay that simply shouldn’t exist. For the elderly and vulnerable in particular, that means unnecessary suffering and misery.

    “Waiting more than six months to see a health professional carries a strong likelihood that your condition will have worsened by the time it is diagnosed and treated, becoming more complicated and more expensive for the NHS to minister.

    “After nearly two decades in charge of our health service, the Welsh Labour Government must not delay in tackling once and for all the perennial issues blighting the Welsh NHS – from poor recruitment and a lack of hospital beds to chronic underfunding.”

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    Source: https://statswales.gov.wales/Catalogue/Health-and-Social-Care/NHS-Hospital-Activity/Referrals/referrals-by-treatmentfunction-month

  5. MILLAR: A-Level results encouraging “but still a job of work to do” Thu, 17/08/2017 - 09:08

    Commenting on today’s A-Level results, Darren Millar AM, Welsh Conservative Shadow Education Secretary, said:

    “Our students and teachers can take great encouragement from today’s results and are due congratulations.

    “The attainment gap for the highest grades has clearly narrowed, but girls continue to outperform boys at other grades.

    “The decline by nearly a fifth in the take-up of computer and science subjects is a real worry given our economy’s skills shortage in these areas.

    “There is still a job of work to do if our students are to compete against the UK’s very best in the labour market and higher education.

    “International league tables still rank Wales as the worst schools system in the UK, while teaching standards and a growing recruitment crisis remain a cause for concern."

    /Ends