Call For Greater Emphasis On Public Health

Doctors are calling on the next Welsh Assembly Government to put public health at the heart of their policies. The British Medical Association Cymru’s manifesto calls for a long list of improvements to people’s everyday health.

It wants to see action to improve people’s diets and to promote sensible drinking, especially among young people, and encourage more people to cycle, rather than use the car. Doctors also want to see action in Wales to lower the limit for drink driving and to tackle the growing problem of people driving while under the influence of drugs.

A survey by Privilege Insurance at Christmas found that 60% of people believe it is safe to drink and drive. And the Government’s official drug policy advisers, the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, has called for the legal alcohol limit for drivers under 25 to be slashed by more than a third.

But the UK Government has indicated that it is not willing to lower the limit, which currently stands at 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood.

Dr Tony Calland, chairman of the BMA’s Welsh council, said, “We believe passionately in the national health service and its founding principles – a comprehensive national service, free at the point of delivery, funded through general taxation and based on people’s needs. Improving health and healthcare for everyone in Wales is the priority and we are committed to delivering quality healthcare.”