26/05/2013 The Wales Report


The issues that matter in Wales. With a look at plans to shake-up specialist hospital care in South Wales and how thousands of homes at risk of flooding could become uninsurable.

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Warnings that some accident and emergency units will collapse


without major reorganisation. are currently running some services


that are fragile and in danger of falling over. We need to move


towards providing those services safely on fewer sites. No change is


not an option. We have seen in the last year an unprecedented demand


on frontline secondary care services, that means all hospitals


throughout Wales. That means we are really right at breaking point.


are not the problems is recruiting into Wales. We are on a downward


spiral of people seeing it as more attractive because we are stretched


and clinicians are trying to provide more care, more out-of-


hours care, without enough people on the rota. When -- when you come


in as an emergency you need to be seen by someone who is trained


appropriately to deal with your condition. We know that, there are


cases where out-of-hours patients are seen by very junior doctors who


do what they can but here is much better provided by senior trained


doctors. The role of the ambulance service is absolutely critical. Not


just in terms of access but being part of the process of care,


getting people to the right here at the right time. If people are


having to travel slightly further two services we want to make sure


access is good and reliable and relatives can get there as well.


That is a service that people can ask questions about. If you are


seeking to regionalised services you have got to make sure in your


plan you have got sufficient transport arrangements dictate that


casualty from the point of injury to that definitive high-level


centre. Any delay in that potentially puts those casualties


at risk. We know that the ambulance service currently is under immense


pressure. I will be seeking assurances that the ambulance


service is going to have increased resources. Allied will be asking


some very tough questions. What will this lead in terms of


services? Will be extra travel time make a difference in terms of


outcomes? You will want solid reassurances that at the outcome is


going to mean better care for our patients. That is certainly


something to think about. The voices of frontline NHS care in


Wales. Why are we in this mess? has come on as over a period of


time. I think also recently we have begun to think there are services


we are providing that are not as good as they could be. We want


people in Wales to have the very best services. When you look at the


accident and emergency case, lots of us might be puzzled by that


figure of increased demand. Why are we suddenly seeing much more demand


for that kind of accident and emergency cover? People argue about


what is going on. What we know for sure is that we are in an ageing


population. It is important we do a good job for them. Some of the


pressure we are seeing is because older people have to come into


hospital and as you get older you need more health care services. We


think if we reorganise on the ground we could do a better job of


looking after people. Our people been concerned about an ambulance


service under pressure being asked to take people into more distant


centres where they might possibly get more specialised care at the


end of it but if that services are already under pressure that could


threaten lives? We have worked carefully with the ambulance


service. I think you will have to make changes. There are three parts


to getting someone to hospital if they need care urgently. The first


and more important thing that happens is what the paramedic does


to you when he comes to you on the ground. Journey times are important


but they are not these or Lee Bain. What is just as important is what


is waiting for you when you get to the end of that journey. If you


have got senior people around the clock on Dec waiting to look after


you, especially hit you have the more serious injuries, you will


have a better outcome. You are simply more likely to live if you


have that service provided like that. That is Flybe are so keen to


get so much senior cover on the ground around the clock. -- why we.


What about it being difficult to convince people that working in


Wales is an attractive option? is a concern. We want the very best


service and we won the very best people to come here to help us


deliver that service. We must have a service that is organised in such


a way that people want to come and work here. They must be sure they


will get good training because people have a choice now and they


might choose to go somewhere else if they think they will get more


and better Experience, better supervised experience. We have to


think about that when planning these changes. Just to be clear,


the kind of reforms we are talking about will come together and be


approved by whom? By the Welsh Government. Is that on-track or


not? Colleagues in the local health boards will be looking to see that


we have gone through this process properly, that things have been


thought through, that we have consulted with people in a


meaningful way to make sure there needs are taking into account.


if it does not go through? We have got a window now. I do not know how


long that when the West, it may be 10 years. Unless we make


significant changes to the way we deliver health care I think you


will have a less good health care system for people in Wales and I


think that will be a shame. Thank you for coming in. Some of the


plans under consideration are strongly opposed, in particular the


proposal to downgrade the accident and emergency unit here. This week


some senior Labour politicians to do the streets to join the campaign


to keep a specialist here at the site. That is despite the fact the


planned changes result from a process that is taking place under


the responsibility of the Welsh Labour Government. I am joined now


by a Labour Assembly member who is also campaigning against the


proposed changes. What are you all posing? What we are arguing for is


the interests of the constituencies we represent. There is a


consultation process which has put forward a number of options. We


want to seek an emergency service maintained in this hospital and


except the need for clinical change but during this process we think it


is essential we look at all the facts behind the decisions and


recommendations. We support the option that is best suited to dead


people of this constituency. Let me put it to you provocatively. You


support the need for clinical change but not if it affects you


and you're constituents? It has to be what will be in the best medical


interest of people. Look at the options been presented to you. I


think there may be other combinations of options by


hospitals working more closely together in the provision of


services. One areas important. If we are to lose certain services in


the hospital there are reasons that others could be moved out from


Cardiff which are far more accessible to people and will also


maintain the status of the hospital. Let's talk about the transparency


of what is going on. This is a decision which will finally have to


be approved by your colleagues in the Government. Our viewers right


to be puzzled by the fact you are out protesting, campaigning


publicly against the decision potentially which will be taken by


your old colleagues, what are they to make of that? Ultimately it will


have to be approved but the criteria for approval is the


medical lead. It is important there is not a political squabble over it.


I did do not make your representations quietly and


privately behind the scenes rather than publicly at this stage? People


contact you and engage with you. They want to know what your views


are and how you are going to represent them during the


consultation process. One of the things we are going to be doing is


assisting people to put in consultation views. Some of those


are different from different parts. Some parts of my constituency


orientate more towards Cardiff already. I think the problems are


even more or so further up the road. It is in your constituents interest


but this hospital is no longer one of these specialised units. What


are your options then, do you still say you disagree? The first stage


is to make sure the basis on which the options are being considered


are based on fact. The second is the maker case as strongly as we


can. Thirdly, if the options come out, I think if we are satisfied


they are based on clinical need them collectively we have to accept


them. The one thing we cannot compromise on his medical safety


and sustainability for the future. The trouble is you have already


publicly stated their opposition to those options. You cannot be


telling me hear you will accept them at the end of the day. What I


am hoping is that some of the things I am supporting and going to


be arguing for should be incorporated within the final


recommendations. That is my aspiration, that the arguments I


put forward are accepted. I am prepared to compromise. I think


there is some merit to some of the points we have started to raise. We


may well end up with a solution that does not give you everything


you want but maintains the Royal Glamorgan with specialist services


and accident and emergency services for the majority of people. Have


you discussed this with the First Minister? I have not. I do not


think it is appropriate because of the role he plays ultimately. I


have discussed it with in the constituency. A lot of people are


pleased I have taken the stand I have. Thank you. Now it is almost


one years since severe flooding hit parts of Wales. Now there are


warnings that homes in the area could soon be uninsurable. An


agreement between insurance providers and the UK Government


which means everyone can access household insurance is due to end


in July with no alternative in sight. What will that mean for


In minutes flooding can devastate lives and wreck property. No one


here in Wales is in any doubt of the damage that flooding can do.


Mick and Jenny found at first hand a year ago. There town look like


this. The summer floods left the downstairs of their house


completely submerged. On the day of the flood there was a huge pulse of


rain in the early hours of the morning and it came up to the arch


of the bridge and started to back up dramatically. It came up to


within I would say six feet in the garden with in half-an-hour. It was


a tremendous increase. The water came in through the back


door. It rushed in through the back door and started to rise very


quickly. It was devastation. It looked as though someone had


grabbed hold of the house and shaken all our contents onto the


floor. Covered in inches of mud so everything had to be thrown away.


It was heartbreaking to open the door and see what had happened.


Mick and his family climbed out of the window with nothing but the


close they were wearing. They lost nearly all their personal


possessions. It could have been worse. Thankfully they have


insurance so 10 months on they have rebuilt their home and moved back


in. It really does take its toll in as much as it is a real emotional


drain. Physically and emotionally over those months we were at our


lowest. Generally because it was so obvious there had been a major


traumatic event the insurance company were actually quite good in


terms of taking on responsibility once they had agreed to take on the


claim. The family have already taken practical steps themselves to


guard against future flooding. Predictably their insurance premium


has already gone up and now they fear they will not get cover at all


the next time they have to renew their policies. That is because the


way flood insurance is provided could soon change. At the moment


there is an agreement between governments and the insurance


providers, it is called the statement of principles. The


insurers have agreed to cover buildings that are actually in a


high risk flooding areas and in return the government in Wales,


England, Scotland and Northern Ireland have been improving their


flood defences, building storm drains, culverts, sea walls, to


lessen the risk. The agreement means that all property owners have


access to a reasonably priced flood insurance. The deal runs out at the


end of July. The Association of British Insurers say that if no new


settlement is reached by the deadline, from August flood


insurance will be left to the free market. Insurers will be able to


charge whatever they like for higher risk properties. Many are


warning that that will leave huge numbers of homes and businesses


unable to afford insurance. In fact, across Wales There are 200,000


properties at risk of flooding from rivers or the sea. According to one


flood victim Support charity, in future, under free-market


conditions, thousands of those properties may not get insurance at


all. What you will probably see his insurance companies pulling out of


the market where there is any significant flood risk. What would


that do to communities and businesses? If you cannot get


insurance you cannot buy a house, you cannot get a mortgage.


Communities need to wake up and smell the coffee but Government


needs to wake up and smell the coffee. This is something they


cannot walk away from. If they are trying to play a game of bluff with


the insurance industry to see who blinks first then it is a disgrace


and I say shame on them for that. Ultimately they are playing with


people's lives and the Health and well-being of whole communities.


Talks are ongoing but there is one main sticking point. The insurers


for the UK government to provide some sort of support to help them


cover the ever-growing cost of flooding. After all, the 2007


floods cost insurers across the UK more than �3 billion. Everyone


accepts that floods are becoming more frequent and extreme, which


may explain why the UK government how worried about getting sucked


into paying a future bill that could turn out to be enormous.


Jonathan Evans, the Conservative MP for Cardiff North who chairs the


all-party insurance group in Westminster says negotiations are


at a crucial stage. If ultimately the Government said it is OK, in


the event there was a real calamity, in the early stages of the scheme


we will stand behind it, then the regulators would be happy and the


cost to the customer would be a manageable cost. It is a lot of our


old photographs of the children. this family go through their


treasured photos that they have managed to rescue, they fear that


if they are flooded again they will be on their own, abandoned by both


the politicians and the insurance. I would like to see a way forward


that we can continue insuring our house so we can carry on living


here. I know we live next to a river and it is a risky place but a


lot of people living risky places to one sort or another and to my


mind the idea behind assurances to share that risk. Our insurance


company have already demonstrated they do not really want us because


of the price of the premium and it would be an easy situation for them


to say knowing agreement that exists and they will not offer any


more insurance. -- and no agreement exists. Helen Callaghan reporting.


I'm joined now from our London studio by Matt Cullen from the


Association of British Insurers. Flooding is a very complex issue


and these talks have been going on for a very long time because we are


trying to solve a very difficult problem and ensure that flood


insurance remains affordable to people all around the country. Some


of these people, if Insurers were doing business as normal, there


would be no business case for that to be possible so it is a difficult


issue for art and the Government to overcome. What would you want the


government to deliver as part of its contribution that they are


reluctant to deliver? There is no country in the world that has a


functional free market for flood insurance, which delivers


affordable flood insurance without any form of government support


whatsoever. We have developed a scheme that has pretty minimal


government involvement but it does involve government to do two main


things, firstly to legislate, to make sure that all insurers take


part in the scheme, otherwise Insurers that did not take part


would get an advantage. Government is fine with that part of it but


the sticking point is that what we are doing is dealing with a very


volatile thing in a flat day. Some years it will not cost very much at


all but the years it will be extremely expensive and how you


manage that volatility is a very critical issue and there is a lot


of discussion about how to share at risk between government and the


insurance industry. One of the options that has been canvassed is


a levy on all insurance policies. Some people are mentioning a pounds


per household on average. Is that figure correct and is that a


principal you can justify? He yes, that figure is correct, it is from


the proposal that the Association Of British Insurers as put forward


and is working on closely with the Government. We think it is


defensible and justifiable. We think it is justifiable for a


number of reasons, firstly because actually lot of people around the


country could find themselves affected by flooding, even though


they might not appear to be all know that they are at a flood risk


now. Lots of people flood these days for whom flood risk has never


been an issue before so there are people out there who may feel that


it is unfair for them to be supporting people at high risk but


come next year or five years down the line it could very well be them.


Yes, that is why debatable, because there will be millions of people


caught in this deal if it comes about, you cannot really claim that


a majority of them are potentially flood victims, can you? Know, you


can't, but fundamentally that is a political decision and it is


something that we have to work with government on and government need


to take it the one and it is their decision whether it is right for


people at row risk of flooding, some of whom may risk flooding in


the future and some may not, but whether it is right for these


people to subsidise or support a small collection of people, I says


more, we are talking between 200,400 1,000 homes here, a lot of


properties around the country, support them to make sure that they


can get the support they really need when they are at their lowest


ebb. -- 200,000 to 400,000. If you do not get this levy, is there no


deal? Without the levy you will have a situation where everybody


has to pay a price that fully reflect the flood risk that they


face. In other words high risk people have no mechanism for being


subsidised or paying less than what they technically should be playing


-- paying. That means that around 200,000 high risk homes around the


country will probably struggle to access affordable flood insurance.


That will have much broader effects than just those homes. It will


affect the communities in which those homes are, the people, the


services, the businesses that rely on those homes and those people, so


the impact will be very significant. Right now, today, what is your hand


as to the probability of a deal being struck in time? The insurance


industry is determined to get a deal, we are working very hard on


it and we have been for two years and we are not letting up. We think


government are working just as hard and we hope and believe that


government understand, as we do, that moving to a free-market is not


a good solution for the country and we therefore have to get a deal in


the near future. Thank you very much for joining us.


It's been quite a season for rugby and, indeed, for football in Wales,


with unprecedented glory and silverware for Welsh clubs. But


what can we do to build on this success? We caught up with the


chair of the Football Association of Wales, Jonathan Ford, in Newport


where future stars of tomorrow mingle with famous faces like


Marcel Desailly and Didi Hamann, training to become coaches at


The Welsh football has had a fantastic success this year.


Cardiff finally won through to premiere Lee. Newport came back


into the lead and Wrexham won the FA Trophy. Who can forget a tiny


town of 1,600 people, the first time in Europe, what a fantastic


success for them. They are playing in the Europa League next year.


Football is big business across the world, it is a global sport. The


money that comes in on a global basis, natural bases and a local


basis is critically important to be spent in the right areas. --


national basis. With the work we do with UEFA we can build facilities


like this and continue to promote and improve football in this


country and improve people's lives as a result. It has been well-


documented that when clubs go through to the Premier League as


Swansea did their Ahmad such benefits are we need to ensure it


comes all the way through to all levels of the game, not just the


top of the game. Welsh football is being much more widely recognised


that. We have fantastic players at international level like Gareth


Bale. What a goal! He had a fantastic season and is


appropriately credited with that awards that he received. What a


fantastic strike! It is important we do not end up with just a nation


of spectators. We want people to be inspired to go out and play


themselves. Football is a fantastic galvanise of community cohesion


which is a knock-on benefit of trying to get people active and


playing together. Of course There is a bigger benefit, health


benefits. Football ultimately promotes an active lifestyle and if


we can encourage people to lead a less sedentary lifestyle and get


out there and get their boots on and kick a football around then


hopefully the benefits later on as regards to Alf will improve this


country no end. Welsh football is really punching above its weight. A


lot of people don't recognise it as being a country leading sport but


in participation terms and spectator terms it really is. We


have the biggest voluntary work force of anything in Wales. Our


coaching programmes are bringing a more coaches and our facility


programmes are providing better facilities. Welsh football is on


the up and it needs to be recognised as such. Hopefully with


some of the success we will have with our national teams, it is not


a matter of if but a matter of when, then people will recognise the


power of the fantastic support we have and they would get on their


boots and playing the pox a bit more than they are now.


And hopefully that won't be the last time we see a World Cup winner


wearing a Welsh shirt! That's it for this week's programme.


We'll be back next week at the later time of 10:55pm. In the


Featuring a look at plans to shake-up specialist hospital care in South Wales.

Plus, with no deal in sight between the UK Government and the Association of British Insurers, thousands of Welsh homes at risk of flooding could become uninsurable.

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