Monday, 18 February 2008


These are clearly a good thing in the right place. We have been pressing for one to serve Cimla (no GP surgery), Pontrhydyfen (part-time surgery now closed) and Tonmawr (part-time surgery about to close) for some time now.

However, the news that Lord Darzi may force a universal policy of polyclinics on England is ominous, given the centralising tendencies of the present Plaid/Labour Assembly Government. (Of course, in adopting the model, the minister will clearly differentiate the Welsh system, as she did with walk-in centres. "Polyclinics" will no doubt become "multi-disciplinary local health facilities".)

As Norman Lamb, the LibDem spokesman for health policy in England says: "There is a remarkable gap between the Government’s rhetoric on local decision making and its obsession on imposing models of care from the centre.

"Polyclinics might be a solution for some communities, but particularly in rural areas access to a doctor could become a nightmare.

"As long as the Government continues to impose its one-size-fits-all policies on local communities, patients will be denied the access to a high standard of healthcare they are entitled to."

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