Healthcare in Wales
This article's factual accuracy may be compromised due to out-of-date information. (November 2010)
Healthcare in Wales is mainly provided by the Welsh public health service, NHS Wales. NHS Wales provides healthcare to all permanent residents that is free at the point of need and paid for from general taxation. Health is a matter that is devolved, and considerable differences are now developing between the public healthcare systems in the different countries of the United Kingdom. Though the public system dominates healthcare provision, private health care and a wide variety of alternative and complementary treatments are available for those willing to pay.
The largest hospital in the country is the University Hospital of Wales hospital.
NHS trusts and health boards
Before 2009, Wales was divided into 10 NHS trusts:
- Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board
- Cardiff and Vale University Health Board
- Cwm Taf NHS Trust
- Conwy & Denbighshire NHS Trust
- Gwent Healthcare NHS Trust
- Hywel Dda Local Health Board
- North East Wales NHS Trust
- North West Wales NHS Trust
- Powys Teaching Health Board
- Velindre University NHS Trust
Out-of-hours services in in north and west Wales were reported to have reached ‘crisis point’ in April 2019. Services at Withybush General Hospital in Pembrokeshire and Prince Philip Hospital in Carmathenshire had to close for the weekend of 30/31 March. During 2018 there were at least 146 urgent care shifts in Wales which did not have a single GP on the out-of-hours service.
There are plans to enhance the role of community pharmacists in Wales. The plans commissioned by the Welsh government and drawn up by the Welsh Pharmaceutical Committee envisage pharmacy independent prescribers in every community pharmacy integrated with GP practices for access to patient records. This will enable the common ailment service to be extended and the pharmacists will be able to refer patients for tests.
In April 2019 Vaughan Gething announced an £11 million fund to transform health and social care services in North Wales. Mental health practitioners will work with ambulance crews and in police control rooms and crisis cafes, safe havens and strengthened home treatment services will be developed. Early intervention services for children and old people will be strengthened.
- NHS now four different systems BBC 2 January 2008
- "Wales out-of-hours services at 'crisis point' as providers unable to cover weekends". Pulse. 10 April 2019. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
- "GP crisis left a million patients without doctor on call over weekends and evenings in 2018". Independent. 3 May 2019. Retrieved 9 June 2019.
- "All community pharmacies in Wales to have an independent prescriber as part of long-term plan for Welsh pharmacy". Pharmaceutical Journal. 23 May 2019. Retrieved 8 July 2019.
- "£11 million in funding announced to bring social care 'closer to home'". Homecare Insight. 25 April 2019. Retrieved 9 June 2019.