Health and Social Care Committee

HSC(4)-33-12 paper 6

Recovery of Medical Costs for Asbestos Diseases (Wales) Bill – Stage 1 consideration

 

To:                   Health and Social Care Committee
From:                Legislation Office
Meeting date:    5 December 2012

Purpose

1.       To invite the Committee to consider and agree its approach to and framework for Stage 1 scrutiny of the Recovery of Medical Costs for Asbestos Diseases (Wales) Bill (‘the Bill’).

Background

 

2.       On 13 November 2012, the Business Committee agreed that the Bill should be referred to the Health and Social Care Committee (‘the Committee’), with a reporting deadline of 8 March 2013

 

3.       On 3 December 2012, Mick Antoniw AM, the Member in Charge of the Bill, introduced the Bill and Explanatory Memorandum.

 

4.       A paper outlining the purpose and provisions of the Bill has been provided separately.   

Role of the Committee

 

5.       The role of the Committee at Stage 1 is to consider and report on the general principles of the Bill (SO 26.10). There are no specific requirements in Standing Orders governing the way in which the Committee carries out this scrutiny.  A suggested approach is set out below, along with a suggested framework within which the Committee will work.  

 

6.       Once the Committee has reported, there will be a Stage 1 debate in plenary for the Assembly to agree the general principles of the Bill. If the general principles are agreed, Stage 2 of the process will involve the detailed consideration of the Bill by the Committee, including the disposal of amendments (Stage 2 is currently scheduled for the period 21 March – 10 May 2013).  

 

Suggested framework

 

7.       In considering its approach to scrutinising the general principles of the Bill at Stage 1 it is suggested that the Committee works within the following broad framework:

 

To consider:

i.       the need for the Bill, which will enable the Welsh Government on behalf of the NHS in Wales to recover the costs of medical treatment and care provided to patients in Wales who have sustained asbestos-related disease (Mesothelioma, Pleural Plaques, Pleural thickening, lung cancer and other associated diseases) and have achieved a civil settlement or judgment in or out of court from an employer or other body.

ii.       whether the Bill achieves its stated purposes;

iii.     the key provisions set out in the Bill and whether they are appropriate to deliver its stated purposes;

iv.      financial implications arising from the Bill; 

v.       potential barriers to the implementation of the key provisions and whether the Bill takes account of them;

vi       whether there are any unintended consequences arising from the Bill;

vii.     the views of stakeholders who will have to work with the new arrangements;

viii     whether the Bill contains a reasonable balance between the powers on the face of the Bill and the powers conferred by Regulations.

Committee’s approach to Stage 1 scrutiny

 

8.       In line with the deadline set by the Business Committee, the Committee will need to complete its scrutiny of the Bill and lay its report no later than 8 March 2013.

 

9.       The reporting deadline allows nine sitting weeks in which to undertake this work, although it is likely that it will have to be carried out alongside scrutiny of two other Bills as well as policy work agreed by the Committee. Time has been set aside during the Committee’s meetings on 10, 16 and 24 January 2013 for scrutiny of witnesses and on 7 and 20 February to consider key issues and the Committee’s draft report on the Bill.

 

10.     The Committee has previously agreed the following general approach to scrutiny of legislation at stage 1:

 

§   General call for evidence
Issue a general call for evidence, which would be notified to the Welsh media and published on the Assembly’s website.  The draft consultation letter and a list of the draft consultation questions are attached at Annexe 1.

 

§   Invite written submissions
Invite written submissions from selected organisations and individuals. A suggested list of consultees is attached at Annexe 2.

 

§   Oral evidence
Invite key stakeholders to give oral evidence at future meetings (alongside the consultation exercise). A provisional list of witnesses drawn from the relevant sectors is attached at Annexe 3. In addition, it is suggested that specific written information is requested in writing from two organisations, although it is not considered necessary to call these organisations as witnesses. (See Annexe 4)

 

§   Outreach

Given the nature of the Bill, and that it mainly affects central government bodies and specific private interests, the use of the Assembly’s Outreach Team to engage with a section of the general public to gauge views on the Bill is not recommended on this occasion.

 

11.     The reporting deadline allows for a five-week consultation period, from 5 December 2012 to 10 January 2013.  This should allow the Committee to consider whether to invite any additional witnesses to give evidence to the Committee in light of the written evidence received, although the timetable would be very tight.

 

12.     The evidence gathered, both written and oral, will help inform the Committee’s consideration of the Bill and its subsequent report.

 

13.     For information, Standing Orders enable both the Finance Committee and the Constitutional and Legislative Affairs Committees to report on the relevant aspects of Bill.

 

Work Programme

 

14.     A timetable for the Committee’s Stage 1 consideration of the Bill is attached at Annexe 5.

Action

 

15.     The Committee is invited to:

 

 

 

 


 

Y Pwyllgor Iechyd a Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol

Health and Social Care Committee

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bae Caerdydd / Cardiff Bay

 Caerdydd / Cardiff

CF99 1NA

                                                             

                              

5 December 2012

 

 

Dear Sir/Madam

 

Consultation on the Recovery of Medical Costs for Asbestos Diseases (Wales) Bill

 

As part of its Stage 1 consideration, the Health and Social Care Committee is calling for evidence on the general principles of the Recovery of Medical Costs for Asbestos Diseases (Wales) Bill.To assist with its consideration, the Committee would welcome your views on this subject.

 

What is a Bill?

 

A Bill is a draft law. Once a Bill has been considered and passed by the Assembly and given Royal Assent by the Queen, it becomes an ‘Act of the Assembly’.

 

There is a four stage process for the consideration of a Bill. Stage 1 involves consideration of the general principles of the Bill by a committee (which includes the taking of written and oral evidence from interested parties and stakeholders), and the agreement of those general principles by the Assembly.

 

What does this Bill seek to achieve?

 

The Explanatory Memorandum that accompanies the Bill states:

 

“The purpose of the Bill is to enable the Welsh Ministers to recover from a compensator (being a person by or on behalf of whom a compensation payment is made to or in respect of a victim of asbestos-related disease), certain costs incurred by the NHS in Wales in providing care and treatment to the victim of the asbestos-related disease.”

 

What is the committee’s role?

 

The role of the committee is to consider and report on the general principles of the Bill. In doing so, the Committee has agreed to work within the following framework:

 

To consider:

 

i)     the need for a Bill to enable the Welsh Government, on behalf of the NHS in Wales, to recover the costs of medical treatment and care provided to patients in Wales who have sustained asbestos-related disease (Mesothelioma, Pleural Plaques, Pleural thickening, lung cancer and other associated diseases) and have achieved a civil settlement or judgment in or out of court from an employer or other body;

ii)   whether the Bill achieves its stated purposes;

iii)  the key provisions set out in the Bill and whether they are appropriate to deliver its stated purposes; 

iv)  the financial implications arising from the Bill;

v)    potential barriers to the implementation of the key provisions and whether the Bill takes account of them;

vi)  whether there are any unintended consequences arising from the Bill;

vii) the views of stakeholders who will have to work with the new arrangements.

viii)        whether the Bill contains a reasonable balance between the powers on the face of the Bill and the powers conferred by Regulations.

 

Invitation to contribute to the inquiry

 

The Committee would like to invite you to submit written evidence to assist in its scrutiny of the Bill. In particular, we would welcome your views on the questions listed in Annexe 1.

 

If you wish to submit evidence, please send an electronic copy of your submission to mailto:HSCCommittee@wales.gov.uk and entitle the e-mail “Consultation – Recovery of Medical Costs for Asbestos Diseases (Wales) Bill.”

 

Alternatively, you can write to:

 

Olga Lewis, Deputy Clerk

Legislation Office

National Assembly for Wales

Cardiff Bay, CF99 1NA.

 

Submissions should arrive by 10 January 2013.  It may not be possible to take into account responses received after this date.

When preparing your submission, please keep the following in mind:

§   your response should address the issues before the Committee. Please reference your response using the title applied above;

§   the National Assembly normally makes responses to public consultation available for public scrutiny and they may also be seen and discussed by Assembly Members at Committee meetings. If you do not want your response or name published, it is important that you clearly specify this in your submission;

§   please indicate whether you are responding on behalf of an organisation, or as an individual; and

§   please indicate whether or not you would be prepared to give oral evidence to the Committee.

 

The Committee welcomes contributions in English and Welsh and will consider responses to the written consultation and hold oral evidence sessions during the spring term.

 

For your information, the Committee has invited submissions from those on the attached distribution list (see Annexe 3).  The Committee would be grateful if you could forward a copy of the letter to any individuals or organisations that are not included on this list, but might like to contribute to the inquiry.  A copy of this letter has been placed on the National Assembly’s website with an open invitation to submit views.

 

Disclosure of Information

 

It is normal practice for the National Assembly to publish evidence provided to a Committee.  Consequently your response may appear in a report or in supplementary evidence to a report.  The National Assembly will not publish information that it considers to be personal data.

 

In the event of a request for information submitted under UK legislation, it may be necessary to disclose the information that you provide.  This may include information which has previously been removed by the National Assembly for publication purposes.

 

If you are providing any information, other than personal data, which you feel is not suitable for public disclosure, it is up to you to stipulate which parts should not be published and to provide a reasoned argument to support this.  The National Assembly will take this into account when publishing information or responding to requests for information.

 

If you have any queries, please contact Steve George, Committee Clerk on 029 2089 8242 or Olga Lewis, Deputy Clerk on 029 2089 8154.

 

Yours faithfully

 

 

 

Mark Drakeford AM

Chair


Annexe 1

 

Consultation Questions

 

General

 

1. Is there a need for a Bill to allow recovery of costs of NHS treatment for asbestos-related diseases in Wales? Please explain your answer.

 

2. Do you think the Bill, as drafted, delivers the stated objectives as set out in the Explanatory Memorandum? Please explain your answer.

 

3. Are the sections of the Bill appropriate in terms of introducing a regime to allow the recovery of costs of NHS treatment for asbestos-related diseases in Wales? If not, what changes need to be made to the Bill?

 

4. How will the Bill change what organisations do currently and what impact will such changes have, if any?

 

5. What are the potential barriers to implementing the provisions of the Bill (if any) and does the Bill take account of them?

 

Powers to make subordinate legislation

 

6. What are your views on powers in the Bill for Welsh Ministers to make subordinate legislation (i.e. statutory instruments, including regulations, orders and directions)?

 

In answering this question, you may wish to consider Section 5 of the Explanatory Memorandum, which contains a table summarising the powers delegated to Welsh Ministers in the Bill to make orders and regulations, etc.  

 

Financial Implications

 

7. What are your views on the financial implications of the Bill?

 

In answering this question you may wish to consider Part 2 of the Explanatory Memorandum (the Regulatory Impact Assessment), which estimates the costs and benefits of implementation of the Bill.

 

Other comments

 

8. Are there any other comments you wish to make about specific sections of the Bill?

 


Annexe 2

Suggested list of consultees

 

Local Authorities

 

Blaenau GwentCounty Borough Council

Bridgend County Borough Council 

Caerphilly County Borough Council 

Cardiff Council

Carmarthenshire County Council 

Ceredigion County Borough Council 

City and County of Swansea

Conwy County Borough Council

Cyngor Sir Ynys Mon

Denbighshire County Council

Flintshire County Council

Gwynedd County Council 

Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council 

Monmouthshire County Council

Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council 

Newport City Council

Pembrokeshire County Council

Powys County Borough Council 

Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough Council 

Torfaen County Borough Council 

Vale of Glamorgan Council

Wrexham County Borough Council 

Society of Local Authority Chief Executives 

 

Voluntary Sector

 

Age Alliance Wales

Age Cymru

ARC Cymru

Better Government for Older People 

Diverse Cymru

Contact the Elderly 

Cruse Bereavement Care Cymru 

The Civic Trust for Wales

Disability Wales

Independent Living Advocacy and Support Group Gwynedd (ILASGG)

National Old Age Pensioners Association In Wales

National Federation of women’s institutes

Patients Association 

Pensioners Forum Wales   

Rethink 

Wales Pensioners

Women’s Royal Voluntary Service Cymru

 

Advisory Groups

 

Care and social Services Inspectorate Wales (CSSIW)

Care Council for Wales

Cancer Research UK

Citizens Advice Cymru 

Civil Service Pensioners Alliance

Coalition on Charging Cymru 

Consumer Focus Wales 

Diverse Cymru

Equality and Human Rights Commission

National Voices

One Voice Wales 

Opan Ageing Research Wales 

RNIB Cymru 

Action on Hearing Loss Cymru

UNISON Cymru

Wales Council for the Blind

Wales Council for the Deaf

 

Representative Organisations

 

Asbestos Awareness Cymru 

Asbestos Victim Support Groups Forum

Aslef

Association of British Insurers 

Association of Personal Injury Lawyers Wales

Association of Directors of Public Health

BMA Wales 

British Lung Foundation Wales 

Cardiff Business Club

Clydeside Action on Asbestos 

Confederation of British Industry

Confederation of British Industry Wales 

Confederation of Community Health Councils

FBU (Fire Brigade Union)

Faculty of Public Health

Forum of Insurance Lawyers

GMB (General Municipal and Boiler Makers Union)

Institute of Directors Wales

Law Society Wales 

Macmillan Wales 

Mari Curie 

Mesothelioma UK 

NASUWT Cymru 

NUT Cymru 

PCS Wales 

Public Health Wales

RMT (National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport)

Tenovus 

UCATT Union Office 

Unite Cymru, Regional Secretary, Andy Richards

Wales TUC

Welsh NHS Confederation

 

Government/Local Government

 

The Auditor General for Wales

Better Government for Older People 

Older People’s Commissioner for Wales

The Children’s Commissioner for Wales

The Civic Trust for Wales 

One Voice Wales 

Public Service Ombudsman Wales 

Wales Council for Voluntary Action 

Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA)  

 

Health/Public Health

 

Community Practitioners & Health Visitors Association  

British Medical Association

Board of Community Health Councils in Wales 

Chief Executives of NHS Trusts in Wales   

General Medical Council Wales    

General Practitioners' Committee Wales

Community Health Councils in Wales 

Community Pharmacy Wales  

Health Commission Wales 

Healthcare Inspectorate Wales    

Local Medical Committee 

Royal College of General Practitioners 

Royal College of Nursing Wales 

Royal College of Physicians 

Royal College of Surgeons

Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain 

The Welsh NHS Confederation 

Welsh National Board for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting 

 

Health Boards and NHS Trusts in Wales

 

Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board 

Aneurin Bevan Health Board

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board 

Cardiff and Vale University Health Board 

Hywel Dda Health Board

Cwm Taf Health Board

Powys Local Health Board

Public Health Wales

Velindre NHS Trust

Welsh Ambulance Service NHS Trust

 

Fire Services

 

Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service

North Wales Fire and Rescue Service

South Wales Fire and Rescue Service

 

 


Annexe 3

 

Suggested persons/organisations to provide oral evidence to the Committee:

 

Member in Charge

 

 

Insurance Industry

 

 

Representatives of Employees* and Asbestos Victims

 

Panel Evidence Comprising:

 

Representatives of Business

 

Panel Evidence Comprising:

 

Medical professionals

 

Panel Evidence Comprising:

 

Legal professionals

 

Panel Evidence Comprising:

 

Minister for Health and Social Services

 

 

*Possible alternative Trade Union organisations to invite

 

UNISON Cymru

Unite Cymru

TUC Wales

Union of Construction, Allied Trades and Technicians (UCATT)


Annexe 4

 

Suggested organisations to be asked to provide specific written evidence to the Committee:

 

Compensation Recovery Unit (UK Government Department for Work and Pensions)

 

 

Law Commission

 

 

Annexe 5

Draft Work Programme – provisional tbc

Date

 

5 December 2013

 

11.10 – 12.10: Approach to Stage 1 Discussion

 

Christmas Recess

 

10 January 2013

AM

 

09:00 – 10:00 Evidence from Mick Antoniw AM – Member in Charge

10.00-10.15 – Discussion of Member in Charge’s evidence (private)

10:15 – 11:00 Evidence Session 1 (Panel)

11:00 – 11:45 Evidence Session 2 (Panel)

 

 

16 January 2013

AM

 

09:00 – 10:00 Evidence Session 3 (ABI)

10:00 – 10:45 Evidence Session 4 (Panel)

10:45 – 12:30 Evidence Session 5 (Panel)

 

 

24 January 2013

AM

 

Evidence Session 6 (Minister)

Mick Antoniw AM – Member in Charge (60 Minutes)

 

 

7 February 2013

 

 

Private consideration of  (Key Issues Paper)

February Recess

 

20 February 2013

 

 

Private consideration of draft report

 

 

27 February 2013

 

 

Private consideration of draft report (if not agreed on 20 February)