Disgusted of Llandrindod Wells

Hart’s health mess up
26/08/2009, 12:02 pm
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Only months after ordering local health boards that cancer drugs should be NHS-funded Edwina Hart, WAG’s health minister, has had to announce the withdrawal of funding thanks to NICE’s decision that the drugs weren’t cost effective.

WAG’s very own Iron Lady started throwing her weight around at the beginning of year over the funding for the drugs – trade names Nexavar, Sutent, Torisel and the nautical-sounding Avastin.

Now she has flip-flopped on the decision, performing a complete volte face (farce, surely?), saying she expects health boards now to follow the NICE guidelines. This of course after she told them in January to listen to her orders instead.

The real boob was to misjudge the decision by NICE, which has been under fire for its decision not to fund these drugs. At the time Hart said she found it ‘unacceptable’ that people should have to wait any longer for Sutent, the kidney cancer drug. Presumably it is now acceptable that instead of waiting on the decision they now have nothing to wait for, since the drug is not available on the NHS.


The sweet smell of desperation
19/08/2009, 9:53 am
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Yowser. There’s a front page splash on the Western Mail today about Welsh Tory ‘links’ to a ‘think tank’ that had called for the NHS to be abolished.

“A RIGHT-WING Tory website and think tank was under fire last night after calling for the dismantling of the “Stalinist” NHS and its replacement by compulsory medical insurance for all,” thundered the paper.

Disgusted may be missing something but doesn’t recall seeing any left-wing Tory websites on the interweb.

Carwyn Jones, who found the site during one of his legendary internet sessions, said:

“I was appalled when I found this article on this group’s website. It’s a direct attack on the NHS and shows the real thinking in the minds of so many Tory MPs.”

This ‘real thinking’, by the way, was encapsulated by Tory MP Peter Bone, who considered ways to “provide everybody in this country with access to the same level of high quality health care, when they need it, at no huge additional cost.” The bastard!

In fact the whole premise of the story seems to fall apart once you get past the headline. Once again, the desperate Western Mail is determined to milk this non-story for all it’s worth – and Labour is desperately trying to smear the Tories as the ‘party of cuts’, when cuts are what is needed to put obese public finances back in shape.