In the National Assembly, the Welsh Liberal Democrats are today calling for a robust, proactive and strong system of inspections in Welsh hospitals.
The National Assembly for Wales will hold a debate to discuss the Health and Social Care Committee’s report on the work of Healthcare Inspectorate Wales. Healthcare Inspectorate Wales (HIW) is the independent inspectorate and regulator of all health care in Wales.
The report states “the committee did not receive the assurances it wanted to hear about the role of HIW in ensuring that healthcare providers are examined properly, meet basic standards, and face sufficient intervention when basic standards are not met.”
The committee proposed one key recommendation: “the Welsh Government should undertake a fundamental review of HIW to reform, develop and improve its regulatory and inspection functions.”
Commenting Kirsty Williams, leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats said:
“The report makes very troubling reading. We need a robust, proactive and strong system of inspections in our hospitals and I do not feel the current system provides that. Many hospitals in Wales are only being inspected every three or five years. Successive governments have added functions over time which has made it difficult to focus on the key role of inspection.
“When giving evidence to the Health Committee, I specifically asked the Healthcare Inspectorate Wales if it could assure me whether it would know if there was a ‘Mid Staffs type’ situation in Wales; they could not give me that assurance.
“The report makes clear that the current system of inspection in Wales is not fit for purpose. Clearly this is not a situation that can continue. We need a hospital inspection system that keeps the people of Wales safe.”