Vaughan Gething, Cabinet Secretary for Health, Well-being and Sport
I am pleased to share with Members a copy of a report into the resilience of health and care services over winter 2016/17 that makes key recommendations for the forthcoming winters.
Members will be aware that I attended the Health, Social Care and Sport Committee in November 2016 as part of its Inquiry into Winter Preparedness, and I made a commitment to undertake a review into the resilience of health and social care services over winter 2016/17.
The National Programme for Unscheduled Care Board subsequently approved a multi-agency evaluation and I am pleased to announce that following the evaluation’s conclusion, the report has been published.
This was an opportunity to take a whole system approach in supporting our organisations in evaluating how their integrated plans delivered for patients in response to the demands placed on them during the winter 2016/17 period. Importantly, this is an opportunity to share lessons learnt and to inform future planning through collaboration in a structured and systematic way. I am particularly pleased that this report takes into account the views of clinicians, health and care staff, professional bodies, system leaders, patients and third sector groups. The Welsh Government will continue to work closely with the NHS to take forward the recommendations.
I would like to pay tribute to the hard working frontline staff – the doctors, nurses, social workers, paramedics, GPs (in and out of hours), therapists, dentists, ambulance staff and other key staff, including those in the third sector, who continue to play a critical role in providing a professional response, ensuring patients receive the best care possible, during very difficult times.
I intend making a further statement about preparations for the forthcoming winter in October.