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The leader of Wales’ doctors has called for greater accountability for NHS managers, saying that the system is currently ‘letting down patients and staff’.
Addressing doctors at the British Medical Association’s annual representative meeting in Belfast, Dr David Bailey, chair of the BMA’s Welsh council, stressed that ‘when a doctor makes an error or brings the profession into disrepute we are held accountable by the GMC. This is not the case for senior manager’s in Wales or elsewhere in the UK. Something needs to change throughout NHS management so that there is true accountability’.
Bailey used his speech to reflect on a year of mixed fortunes in Wales, evoking the Welsh government’s commitment implement to the BMA’s Fatigue and Facilities charter throughout the country and provide free sanitary products to hospital inpatients in Welsh hospitals to help eradicate period poverty.
However, Bailey also criticised Healthcare Education and Improvement Wales for failing to provide whistleblowing protection to junior doctors in Wales, leaving them as the only junior doctors in the UK without this protection.
To improve the governance processes, Dr Bailey said BMA Cymru Wales would campaign for Welsh NHS managers register, similar to that of doctors and nurses stating that:
He said: “BMA Cymru Wales will vigorously campaign to change the legislation so that there is a register for senior managers who aren’t already regulated. The current system is letting down both patients and staff and cannot continue any longer. We need real change to ensure that patient care really is the first duty for all involved in healthcare.”