‘Betsi has to go’: Plaid Cymru pledges to scrap north Wales health board if elected in Senedd elections

Glan Clwyd Hospital, part of the Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board area

Plaid Cymru have said that they will scrap Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board if they enter government after next year’s Senedd elections.

Shadow Health Minister Rhun ap Iorwerth said there was a need for a “new health and care landscape in the north”, describing the current system as too big and cumbersome, with standards suffering as a result of a “centralised agenda”.

Betsi Cadwaladr health board was placed in “special measures” over five years ago – putting it under more direct Welsh Government control, following a damning report into failings on the Tawel Fan mental health ward.

In his speech at today’s Plaid Cymru conferennce, Mr ap Iorwerth will detail how a Plaid Cymru government will address a series of concerns “resulting from Labour’s mismanagement of the NHS”.

He will also criticise a lack of pandemic preparedness, and the failure to establish a robust testing system in Wales, with an overreliance on the UK wide scheme.

“In the north, the population has endured over five years of a Health Board in special measures,” he will say.

“For five years the Government has failed to get to grips with running the health board. Well I say, enough is enough. For the sake of staff and patients, it’s time for a new health and care landscape in the north.

“I’m not looking for a health reorganisation to preside over but here’s one that’s well overdue. Betsi Cadwaladr has to go, and I would redesign those services in the north as Health Minister.”

 

‘Joined up’

Rhun ap Iorwerth said he would establish a combined Health and Care system providing social care free at the point of need.

“In the north can now develop a new model – a model that delivers for patients from Wrexham to Aberdaron, a new leader in providing bilingual healthcare in the north west, a model of delivering health to rural areas, and delivering true health and care integration,” he said.

“If elected next year, Plaid Cymru will establish a new seamless National Health and Care Service for Wales. A new joined up service with a renewed emphasis on early intervention and preventative health, on promoting people’s independence, that treats health and care staff equally in terms of pay and conditions, and with Social Care provided free at the point of need – finishing the work started by Aneurin Bevan all those years ago.”

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