University think tank ready to share findings on future of health care

Academics at a top think tank are seeking talks with Welsh Health Secretary Vaughan Gething to discuss the future of health and social care in Wales.

Over the past 12 months the Morgan Academy based at Swansea University hosted a series of debates covering issues ranging from cyber security and affordable social care to recruitment and training problems affecting those working in health and social care.

Morgan Academy Director Professor Mike Sullivan has now written to Mr Gething, Cabinet Secretary for Health, Wellbeing and Sport, to share the findings and to request a meeting to consider how they can be used to benefit Wales as a whole.

mike Sullivan

Key messages to emerge at the events included concern that the NHS in Wales is not investing enough to take advantage of current and new digital technologies. 

Professor Sullivan (pictured) said: “This is not about spending more.  It is about ensuring that current investment is being targeted at the right areas.”

The Academy also offered to lead discussions with experts about how to assess the cost-effectiveness of new technologies.

Professor Sullivan said the Academy, named after former First Minister and Swansea University Chancellor the late Rhodri Morgan, wanted to highlight issues not addressed by current government strategy and plans.

A research-based think tank created to discuss issues affecting public policy, the Academy receives no Government funding and so is able to comment freely on issues as it sees them, he explained.

The debates attracted hundreds of visitors and saw key Welsh NHS and industry figures joined by politicians including Finance Secretary Mark Drakeford and Julie James during her time as Minister for Skills and Science.

The events also highlighted the importance of so-called prudent healthcare – where careful budgeting achieves tangible benefits and quality outcomes for patients – and of adopting a national coordinated approach to vital health recruitment,  marketing the Wales as an attractive place to live and work.  

Professor Sullivan added: “I hope this underlines the Morgan Academy’s ambition to make a practical contribution to strategic and policy developments in the field of health and social care.”