Magazine article Public Finance

Welsh Government Holds to Health Commitment

Magazine article Public Finance

Welsh Government Holds to Health Commitment

Article excerpt

Health continues to be a top priority for the Welsh Assembly government, according to Finance Minister Sue Essex as she unveiled the draft budget for 2006/07 last week.

Almost half of next year's £240m funding increase is to go on health, helping to fund service improvements in local health boards and trusts and improving access to NHS dentistry.

Essex said: 'Improving performance on waiting times continues to be a key government priority. We will invest some £80m each year for the next three years to meet the first minister's commitment to bring maximum waits down to 26 weeks by 2009. We will continue to meet this pressure by managing our underspends.'

She said the draft budget also delivered a good settlement for local government, with growth of almost 5%.

'Recognising the particular problems that local government faces in dealing with refuse and waste, we have therefore provided additional funding for this. …

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