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Tuesday, August 03, 2010

The state of the Welsh health service

Revelations by Plaid Cymru's Chief Whip yesterday that his own government is spending tens of thousands of taxpayers money on protected salaries for bureaucrats within the NHS following reorganisation was further put into context today when the Western Mail reported that Local Health Boards overspent buy £50 million in the first three months of this financial year:

Some NHS organisations have started introducing cost-saving measures but there will be more pain to come as health boards face four more years of tight budgets.

Figures collected by the Western Mail show three-month overspends range from just £0.9m in Powys to a massive £11.9m in Gwent.

The NHS has been told it must find £435m of savings this year alone to ensure it balances the books at the end of the financial year – equivalent to £1.1m a day. It is understood that although each of Wales’ seven health boards has detailed saving plans in place, many of the anticipated savings have not yet been realised.

On top of this the Minister has already indicated that the health service will need to contain £1.9 billion worth of extra spending pressures over the next five years.

In these circumstances how can Labour and Plaid Cymru justify their decision to retain redundant executives within the organisation at the expense of front line health services?
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