The Welsh Language Commissioner has welcomed a new report by the Older People’s Commissioner for Wales on GP services. The Welsh Language Commissioner said that the report echoes her message about the importance of providing healthcare services in Welsh, and underlines the need to improve the language provision for the wellbeing of patients.
A number of messages in the Older People’s Commissioner report, GP Services in Wales: The Perspective of Older People are consistent with the Welsh Language Commissioner’s messages in her report, ‘My Language, My Health: Inquiry into the Welsh language in Primary Care’ (2014).
The Welsh language Commissioner, Meri Huws, said:
"I welcome the publication of this report by the Older People’s Commissioner. Her findings – the research and quotes from people - paint a very similar picture to what I heard when gathering evidence for my inquiry.
“Communicating in a language that a person understands and is comfortable using is an essential part of any service; and particularly in the delivery of medical services to older people.
"I have seen attitudes towards the Welsh language within the health sector changing in recent years, and there is now recognition of the clinical need of communicating in the patient’s language.
"Health care providers now need to act to ensure that this change in attitude is reflected in the reality of patients’ experience. The report further highlights the need to have Welsh language standards regulations for the health sector which will enable me to proceed in imposing language duties as soon as possible."