Wales has to promote its distinctiveness in health and social care to ensure it attracts and retains highly skilled staff, BMA Cymru Wales has argued.
The assessment has been made in written evidence by the BMA to a Parliamentary review into health and social care in Wales, being led by former chief medical officer Ruth Hussey.
The association said: ‘As a key priority, BMA Cymru Wales believes that the panel needs to recommend that the Welsh Government works with partners to develop a clear, long-term strategic vision for the NHS and social care in Wales.
‘We have previously set out our belief that a vision, which takes a whole-systems approach, is very much needed. This was a prominent feature of our work leading up to the 2016 Assembly elections and part of the BMA Cymru Wales manifesto, “What About Health? Three steps to a healthier nation”.
‘We believe that a vision for the NHS in Wales must highlight and promote what is distinct about the approach to health and social care in Wales – it should outline what Wales is able to offer individuals training or working in the NHS and in social care, and what that means for the delivery of care and promotion of well-being.
‘We would urge the panel to consider this “Wales Offer”, the potential it has to attract individuals to a career in Wales, and its role in helping to retain our existing, highly skilled staff.
‘Importantly, this would send strong signals to students, trainees and doctors that they are valued in Wales. We believe the points which follow in this response will help to inform the development of a vision.
‘Along with our fellow healthcare professionals we are committed to working proactively with the Government, health boards and other sectors to realise this vision.’
IT provision is also highlighted by BMA Cymru Wales as a key priority for the NHS. The evidence, submitted before the recent cyber attack on NHS England, states systems need to improve to enhance patient care.
The evidence said: ‘We recognise there also needs to be sufficient investment in IT systems to ensure they are fit for purpose, including to provide an effective interface between primary care, secondary care and social care.’
Read 'What About Health? Three steps to a healthier nation'
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