Clause 3 — Functions of the Centre

Part of Health (Wales) Bill – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 9th January 2003.

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Photo of Nigel Evans Nigel Evans Shadow Secretary of State for Wales 2:30 pm, 9th January 2003

I do not dispute the fact that the strategy started in Scotland and that it followed in England. The question that I want to stress is why Wales is last. People in Wales who suffer from diabetes have been pushing hard for such a strategy; indeed, even in England we waited too long for its implementation.

There is huge confusion even about simple things, such as the roles of county councillors, MPs and MEPS. We do not know who does what. We are trying to bring back some sanity and coherence. That is what the amendment is about.

There is a problem with flu jabs, for example. Due to the recent cold snap, one hospital in Wales stopped all non-emergency operations until February to tackle the problem. Although we would endorse a campaign to encourage more people to take up flu jabs, we also know that in some areas doctors have run out of vaccine in the past. A campaign might be initiated in one part of the country but seen on television in another area where no vaccine was available. That would be a gross waste of time and extremely inefficient.