P-05-905 Call for an Independent judicial Inquiry into the reorganisation of services within Cwm Taf Health Board – Petitioner to Committee, 28.01.20


Thank you for the opportunity to reply to ministers correspondence to the committee chair.


Having read the letter the first point we wish to make is how disappointed we are that the minister does not feel it is appropriate to hold an independent judicial inquiry. We feel that the concerns of the community are being dismissed out of hand and that is undermining confidence in the ability to deliver comprehensive health services to the growing population of Rhondda Cynon Taff. The health service is going from crisis to crisis and this can be classically exampled by the recent disclosure about plans to downgrade A&E facilities at Royal Glamorgan at a time when A&E waiting times are an all time high, you can hardly call that strategic and forward thinking planning. We are have repeatedly been conditioned to accept that a winter A&E crisis is to be annual event, hospitals cancelling routine surgery, up to 40 hour waits from transfer from A&E to wards at Royal Glamorgan. This weekend we have been made aware of further problems in delays of transfers from A&E to wards have resulted in the patients being discharged to their own homes and into the care of the families or local authorities. The failure to address these matters is only stacking up problems for the future.


For many years we have been advised of staffing problems, we have heard from the very people who run Cwm Taff previously, who constantly drip fed the mantra “it’s not a money issue”. If that is the case there has been plenty of opportunity to recruit and to train in those areas where staff shortages have been identified. Systemic failure is rife within Cwm Taff Morgannwg and its starts and ends at the top. Those dedicated frontline staff some of whom are unable to speak out due to bullying and intimidation are giving their all to deliver for the public.


Simply adopting and continuing the South Wales Programme is akin to rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. The inquiry should and must happen to prevent further crisis in this much loved public service.


In closing, can we also point out that the minister is correct on one count at least. There was public consultation on the South Wales Programme and we attended every meeting. What the minister does not disclose is that there were 65,00 objections to the proposals, which would be hard to dismiss or ignore whatever opinion you may hold