Welsh Government turns to English hospitals to ease heart surgery demand

THE Welsh Government is to pay for a private company in England to provide heart surgery for patients in Wales.

The news of the contract with Spire Hospital in Bristol comes as the prime minister called for the Welsh Government to get its act together on the NHS.

According to the Welsh Government website Mark Drakeford, health minister, had agreed to enter into a short term contract, running until September 30, with the English private hospital for cardiac surgery services.

It is understood cardiologists will be making the decisions about who is offered the referrals and it is likely Gwent patients, who are currently treated in either Cardiff or Swansea, will be among those affected.

The extra capacity which is understood to also include NHS hospitals in Birmingham and London is being used this financial year and next to meet the demand in Wales. 

It also emerged on Tuesday that the Royal College of Surgeons had written to the Healthcare Inspectorate Wales to ask for an update on whether its concerns on cardiac surgery waiting times have been addressed.

It had originally raised concerns last summer about a high number of patients dying while waiting for cardiac surgery.

Darren Millar AM, shadow minister for health and social services, said: “On the very day that the Royal College of Surgeons raises further concerns in the media, the Welsh Labour Government slips out information about a contract with a private hospital in Bristol, despite its previous ideological pledge to keep the independent sector out of the NHS.

“This is the height of cynicism and hypocrisy and shows that this lazy Labour Government has to be shamed into acting in the best interests of patients.”

A spokesman for the health minister Mark Drakeford fought back, saying: “These are ridiculous comments about a decision taken in the interest of patients.

“We have invested in new cardiac theatres and equipment in South Wales as part of our long-term strategy for improving cardiac treatment, but it is sensible to take short-term action too. A responsible opposition would welcome this approach.”

Prime minister David Cameron on Tuesday highlighted the criticisms from the Royal College of Surgeons “that there are people on NHS waiting lists in Wales who are dying because waiting lists are too long”.

“That is a matter for the Labour Welsh Assembly Government, and they need to get their act together,” he told prime minister’s questions.

Comments (10)

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6:06pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Bobevans says...

The crumbling Welsh NHS gets ever worse
The crumbling Welsh NHS gets ever worse Bobevans
  • Score: 5

6:07pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Llanmartinangel says...

A shame Labour let people die on waiting lists for idealogical reasons before this U-turn.
A shame Labour let people die on waiting lists for idealogical reasons before this U-turn. Llanmartinangel
  • Score: 6

6:34pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Mervyn James says...

Bit rich of the English NHS lecturing Wales on its health, when theirs is so dire too ! wales is too poor to have an NHS that's the rub... we spend more time treating the self inflicted than the genuine cases. The drunks, the druggies, the obese, those demanding cosmetic surgery, etc kick them out we could run a decent service for those genuinely in need.

I defy anyone to balance the the NHS books, if your cash input is 40% of the cost, I defy you to make any business viable. The money covers the bare bones of the NHS and the social services/schools, the rest gotta go according the councils. elderly care homes, community centres, family care support, libraries, leisure centres, so the heart of the welsh community is being destroyed. It's a false economy shutting down elderly community access areas, this will directly impinge on the NHS as their health deteriorates more rapidly via isolation. re-homing people to smaller premises incurs twice the cost of leaving them where they are.. These tory cuts are designed to destroy the labour power base in Wales, I suggest they are simply re-enforcing it.
Bit rich of the English NHS lecturing Wales on its health, when theirs is so dire too ! wales is too poor to have an NHS that's the rub... we spend more time treating the self inflicted than the genuine cases. The drunks, the druggies, the obese, those demanding cosmetic surgery, etc kick them out we could run a decent service for those genuinely in need. I defy anyone to balance the the NHS books, if your cash input is 40% of the cost, I defy you to make any business viable. The money covers the bare bones of the NHS and the social services/schools, the rest gotta go according the councils. elderly care homes, community centres, family care support, libraries, leisure centres, so the heart of the welsh community is being destroyed. It's a false economy shutting down elderly community access areas, this will directly impinge on the NHS as their health deteriorates more rapidly via isolation. re-homing people to smaller premises incurs twice the cost of leaving them where they are.. These tory cuts are designed to destroy the labour power base in Wales, I suggest they are simply re-enforcing it. Mervyn James
  • Score: -10

6:47pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Stevenboy says...

Oh no! What will happen to the poor Welsh speaking heart patients when they get there and find all the literature and notices in English?
Oh no! What will happen to the poor Welsh speaking heart patients when they get there and find all the literature and notices in English? Stevenboy
  • Score: 7

6:48pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Stevenboy says...

Mervyn James wrote:
Bit rich of the English NHS lecturing Wales on its health, when theirs is so dire too ! wales is too poor to have an NHS that's the rub... we spend more time treating the self inflicted than the genuine cases. The drunks, the druggies, the obese, those demanding cosmetic surgery, etc kick them out we could run a decent service for those genuinely in need.

I defy anyone to balance the the NHS books, if your cash input is 40% of the cost, I defy you to make any business viable. The money covers the bare bones of the NHS and the social services/schools, the rest gotta go according the councils. elderly care homes, community centres, family care support, libraries, leisure centres, so the heart of the welsh community is being destroyed. It's a false economy shutting down elderly community access areas, this will directly impinge on the NHS as their health deteriorates more rapidly via isolation. re-homing people to smaller premises incurs twice the cost of leaving them where they are.. These tory cuts are designed to destroy the labour power base in Wales, I suggest they are simply re-enforcing it.
How many more times - Health is devolved in Wales. It's for WAG to prioritise it's spending. Fat chance.
[quote][p][bold]Mervyn James[/bold] wrote: Bit rich of the English NHS lecturing Wales on its health, when theirs is so dire too ! wales is too poor to have an NHS that's the rub... we spend more time treating the self inflicted than the genuine cases. The drunks, the druggies, the obese, those demanding cosmetic surgery, etc kick them out we could run a decent service for those genuinely in need. I defy anyone to balance the the NHS books, if your cash input is 40% of the cost, I defy you to make any business viable. The money covers the bare bones of the NHS and the social services/schools, the rest gotta go according the councils. elderly care homes, community centres, family care support, libraries, leisure centres, so the heart of the welsh community is being destroyed. It's a false economy shutting down elderly community access areas, this will directly impinge on the NHS as their health deteriorates more rapidly via isolation. re-homing people to smaller premises incurs twice the cost of leaving them where they are.. These tory cuts are designed to destroy the labour power base in Wales, I suggest they are simply re-enforcing it.[/p][/quote]How many more times - Health is devolved in Wales. It's for WAG to prioritise it's spending. Fat chance. Stevenboy
  • Score: 6

6:49pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Magor says...

Can we just scrap WAG and let Westminster take control,everything is going downhill that WAG touch.
Can we just scrap WAG and let Westminster take control,everything is going downhill that WAG touch. Magor
  • Score: 7

6:50pm Wed 26 Feb 14

Magor says...

Mervyn James wrote:
Bit rich of the English NHS lecturing Wales on its health, when theirs is so dire too ! wales is too poor to have an NHS that's the rub... we spend more time treating the self inflicted than the genuine cases. The drunks, the druggies, the obese, those demanding cosmetic surgery, etc kick them out we could run a decent service for those genuinely in need.

I defy anyone to balance the the NHS books, if your cash input is 40% of the cost, I defy you to make any business viable. The money covers the bare bones of the NHS and the social services/schools, the rest gotta go according the councils. elderly care homes, community centres, family care support, libraries, leisure centres, so the heart of the welsh community is being destroyed. It's a false economy shutting down elderly community access areas, this will directly impinge on the NHS as their health deteriorates more rapidly via isolation. re-homing people to smaller premises incurs twice the cost of leaving them where they are.. These tory cuts are designed to destroy the labour power base in Wales, I suggest they are simply re-enforcing it.
WAG cant run anything,just get rid!
[quote][p][bold]Mervyn James[/bold] wrote: Bit rich of the English NHS lecturing Wales on its health, when theirs is so dire too ! wales is too poor to have an NHS that's the rub... we spend more time treating the self inflicted than the genuine cases. The drunks, the druggies, the obese, those demanding cosmetic surgery, etc kick them out we could run a decent service for those genuinely in need. I defy anyone to balance the the NHS books, if your cash input is 40% of the cost, I defy you to make any business viable. The money covers the bare bones of the NHS and the social services/schools, the rest gotta go according the councils. elderly care homes, community centres, family care support, libraries, leisure centres, so the heart of the welsh community is being destroyed. It's a false economy shutting down elderly community access areas, this will directly impinge on the NHS as their health deteriorates more rapidly via isolation. re-homing people to smaller premises incurs twice the cost of leaving them where they are.. These tory cuts are designed to destroy the labour power base in Wales, I suggest they are simply re-enforcing it.[/p][/quote]WAG cant run anything,just get rid! Magor
  • Score: 6

11:10pm Wed 26 Feb 14

gingertom says...

Until consultant contracts are looked at then waiting lists will not change. The NHS lists are a constant supply to consultants and their private work. If you look at cardiff university online then mark drakeford works there aswell he must be worth some money. He needs to focus on his NHS job and get it sorted. WAG got money to spend 52 million on an airport and fund pinewood in wales. They need to sort out their priorities.
Until consultant contracts are looked at then waiting lists will not change. The NHS lists are a constant supply to consultants and their private work. If you look at cardiff university online then mark drakeford works there aswell he must be worth some money. He needs to focus on his NHS job and get it sorted. WAG got money to spend 52 million on an airport and fund pinewood in wales. They need to sort out their priorities. gingertom
  • Score: 1

1:02pm Thu 27 Feb 14

SuperTonic7th says...

A bit late for me. While I was waiting for RGH to get their act together, my heart condition was getting worse and causing permanent damage. So I paid privately to see someone at Spire. All sorted now. Maybe that's where they got the idea from!
A bit late for me. While I was waiting for RGH to get their act together, my heart condition was getting worse and causing permanent damage. So I paid privately to see someone at Spire. All sorted now. Maybe that's where they got the idea from! SuperTonic7th
  • Score: -1

1:34pm Fri 28 Feb 14

gingertom says...

see:

youtube.com/watch?v=
hSLFeJYIw4E
see: youtube.com/watch?v= hSLFeJYIw4E gingertom
  • Score: -1

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