I feel a touch dispirited tonight, following a meeting in my Welshpool office this morning. The subject under discussion was the proposal to establish a renal dialysis unit at Welshpool. The meeting included the Chair of Kidney Foundation Wales, and the local hospital League of Friends who would probably be willing to help fund such a development. As our discussions developed, it seemed to me that we were no further forward than we were three years ago. Its enough to make anyone but the most dogged just give up and drink wine. But I just can't do that.
I don't know where the blockage lies. Is it the Minister? Personally, I think the current Health Minister, Edwina Hart, is effective and straight speaking. Perhaps its the civil service? Well, it could well be. There seems a conspiracy to prevent the release of any information that has the capacity to increase knowledge. Its the equivalent of nailing jelly to the wall and is enough to break the heart of the most committed volunteers.
Our conclusion this morning was that we need to establish a Renal Mid Wales Committee to create some noise. It will be necessary for this committee to operate under the auspices of Kidney Foundation Wales - because publicity and headlines in our newspapers, the County Times and Shropshire Star have no impact whatsoever on civil servants - probably because their Minister is unlikely to see anything that is not in the South Wales newspapers. Oh well, if that is what's to be done, better make a start on it tomorrow - but today has severely tested my belief that a renal dialysis unit will come to Welshpool anytime soon.