Speaking during a visit to the Welsh Labour Government-funded Dinas Powys Medical Centre, Jane Hutt and Vaughan Gething said the NHS would be savaged by the Tories’ £1bn “efficiency savings” and devastated by a chaotic, top-down re-organisation pledged by Plaid Cymru.
Setting out their commitments for health and social services in Wales, the next Welsh Labour Government will invest in the Welsh NHS; create a New Treatments Fund; continue to improve access to GP surgeries and build a new Velindre Cancer Centre.
And as the first all-out junior doctor strike enters its second day, Welsh Labour also promised to continue to respect all NHS staff and work to prevent industrial action in Wales.
Ms Hutt, Welsh Labour’s candidate for the Vale of Glamorgan, said: “We have seen the damage the Tories have done to NHS in England – record deficits; creeping privatisation and an all-out junior doctor strike. Now the Tories want to take £1bn out of the NHS budget in Wales every year.
“The Tories would have a devastating effect on our NHS and on the services we all rely on every day.”
The Tories have said they can eliminate £1bn of “waste” every year from the £7bn health and social services budget – one pound in every seven. This is equivalent to Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board’s annual budget.
Meanwhile Plaid Cymru has pledged to break-up the NHS as we know it by giving local authorities control of GP and community-based health services. All hospital services in Wales will be run by a single government department in Cardiff.
Mr Gething, Welsh Labour’s candidate for Cardiff South and Penarth, said: “Plaid’s plan represents the end of the NHS as we know it. This is nothing short of the break-up of the NHS and will condemn the health service to years of chaotic, confusing and a hugely costly re-organisation.
“We should be spending money on frontline services to ensure people have access to better services, high-quality and timely care not disruptive structural changes.
“Only Welsh Labour will protect the NHS and our social services. We will ensure these vital services have the resources they need to thrive and to look after the people of Wales.”