UNISON Cymru Wales is today launching the #iamthewelshnhs campaign to challenge cynical and cheap political attacks against the health service.
The union wants to highlight how ‘lazy political hits’ damage morale and the relationship of trust between patients and staff.
The Wales TUC and the health unions have previously denounced the claims made by prime minister David Cameron that the border between England and Wales had become “a line between life and death”.
The Nuffield and OECD Reports in 2015 and 2016 have shown in overall terms there is no health service either in England or any of the devolved nations that could claim to be better than the others.
During the Welsh Assembly election campaign, health workers are being encouraged to use the hashtag #iamthewelshnhs, with images and updates to promote the work undertaken by staff from across Wales.
Donna Hutton, UNISON lead organiser for health, said: “Politicians who are happy to take ill-informed and cheap shots at the Welsh NHS need to remember their responsibility to tell the truth about our service and the people who deliver it.
“It’s not good enough to drop in a vague platitude about the staff, when lies and smears are aimed at the headlines. It harms morale and damages trust.
“Whether they work with a scalpel, spreadsheet or mop, we are proud of the dedicated service that staff give our Welsh NHS day in, day out. #iamthewelshnhs is a chance for workers to show the demanding, caring and complex jobs they do.”
UNISON regional secretary Margaret Thomas said: “We know that NHS workers are trusted more than politicians. This is why we will be making sure that those who try to use our service as a political football are made accountable for their comments at a time when the workforce is delivering under serious pressures.”
Contact: Alastair Gittins, UNISON Cymru Wales Press Officer, on 07816 538397.