Commenting on today’s report into the effectiveness of GP clusters, Welsh Conservative Shadow Health Secretary, Angela Burns AM, said:
“Today’s report shines a worrying light into the failure of the 64 clusters across Wales to consistently relieve pressure on our GPs and hospitals.
“The burden on the frontline of our health service in Wales – general practice – continues to escalate and this is of particular concern as we enter the difficult ‘winter pressure’ season.
“If implemented effectively with the correct level of funding, the clusters should assist in relieving pressure on GPs and on our hospitals but sadly Labour’s continued mismanagement of the NHS in Wales continues to plague services, which is having a profound impact upon the patient experience right across the.
“Once again, this report highlights a worrying failure to share best practice across Wales’ seven health boards – with a dramatic inconsistency between the effectiveness of the clusters.
“This is the main to clusters not being freed to try out concepts because they don't have functional control over the budget. Our GPs are experienced practitioners with an in depth knowledge of their patient base and the desire and drive to be innovative in providing services.
“It is imperative that they are allowed to innovate without the heavy hand of government or overly zealous health board oversight stifling that innovation or dictating services."