We need a national conversation on the future of the NHS

Assistant director of the Welsh NHS Confederation Nesta Lloyd-Jones responds to the health minister's NHS 75 speech.

6 July 2023

Responding to the health minister’s NHS 75 speech, assistant director of the Welsh NHS Confederation Nesta Lloyd-Jones said: 

“We’re calling on the Welsh and UK Governments to hold a national conversation on how the health and care system can innovate and transform to meet the needs of future generations.  

“The NHS has a history of continuously adapting to respond to opportunities and challenges. Today, the NHS continues to drive innovations in patient care, none of which would be possible without the skill, dedication and compassion of NHS staff, as well as the many social care staff, volunteers, third sector, unpaid carers and communities that support the health and wellbeing of the nation.   

“But this alone is not enough to ensure the sustainability of our health and care services for future generations. Despite all the operational challenges, the public’s unwavering commitment to the NHS should not be taken for granted.   

“We need an open and honest conversation with the public about what the future health and care service looks like. This must be centred on an NHS that is adequately and sustainably funded, an NHS that is taking care and prevention to people and their communities, an NHS that empowers and enables, and one that benefits from improving public health. It must be based on an ambitious and honest partnership between the NHS and those it serves. 

“The challenge now is to use the historic moment of the NHS turning 75 to unite behind a shared vision of the NHS’s future. It is for the population and all sectors across Wales to ask what they can do to support the health and wellbeing of people now and in the future. Change must happen, it’s simply not an option to stay as we are – we need to think about the future now and what part we need to play in that future.”