As reported on Wales Online Welsh Labour Health Minister Lesley Griffiths this week admitted to the Assembly's Health Committee that there is still a major problem with regard to the recruitment of specialist neonatal staff.
The Minister said:
"Obviously staffing is something that we still need to work on. It's continual progress and we have to make sure we make Wales as attractive a place as possible for clinicians and we have to make sure the models are right, and I'm not saying they are all wrong or all right, clearly there is work to do."
This is an issue that Welsh Liberal Democrats have been concerned about for some time,
but is an issue that the devolved Welsh Government have failed to get to grips with. It is not a new problem. Our Assembly Members have been calling for action as far back as 2009, and again last year they debated the issue in Chamber in an attempt to get the Government to act.
It is a problem which has affected services in RCT - the neo natal unit at the Royal Glamorgan was downgraded four years ago, it was claimed at first temporarily, but the downgrade became permanent due to lack of suitably qualified staff.
It is quoted as one of the reasons why change is needed in the South Wales Programme for Change which seeks to reorganise certain critical care services across South Wales and has led to fears of some services being lost from the Royal Glamorgan and Prince Charles.
As we have said previously, people need to be reassured that service provision will be adequate to meet the demand after any reorganisation. Reports of staff shortages do nothing to quell public concerns. The Labour Government need to get to grips with this and the many other issues that are holding our health service back.