23 January 1948

Transferring ownership of hospitals to the nation did not mean Glamorgan losing its new hospital to Whitehall or even to Cardiff, health minister Aneurin Bevan said at the opening of East Glamorgan County Hospital. No attempt would be made to run hospitals by distant control regardless of the needs and views of those they served. Hospital management committees would normally be responsible for a linked group of hospitals forming a natural unity. Regional hospital boards would appoint them after consulting county and borough councils, existing hospital managers, medical and dental staff and other local bodies. HMC members would be men and women from the neighbourhood who could contribute experience and knowledge of varying kinds.

Mr Bevan added: 'The NHS Act will start on 5 July... The new service can be launched smoothly and harmoniously... or stormily, surrounded by prejudice, poisoned by misrepres-entations, and fragmented by partisan passions. The responsibility for deciding between these two rests largely with the medical profession.'