Healthcare managers in Wales are reporting boosted self confidence as a second senior manager departs the English health service to work in Wales’s integrated system.

Welsh managers responding to a survey said the country was “at least as good as England” in 10 of 14 areas, including accessibility to primary care, emergency treatment and financial management.

Results of the anonymous survey published this week by the University of Glamorgan institute for health and social care put England ahead in several important areas, such as governance and elective care.

But institute director Marcus Longley said more managers were now rating Wales on a par with or better than England.

He said: “There is a degree of self confidence about that wasn’t there a year or two ago.

“For too long it has been obvious Wales was a laggard on things like waiting times. There is now not that much difference.

“As people look at England and complexities of making the market work, more are thinking that actually a slow and steady approach has got a lot to offer.”

The news came as Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale primary care trust chief executive Trevor Purt outlined his reasons for leaving his PCT to head the new Hywel Dda local health board.

Mr Purt’s appointment was announced last week, after Howard Waldner, who had been offered the job, decided to remain as chief of Vancouver Island health authority in Canada.

Mr Purt said: “The integrated nature of the board is a real opportunity to see how, without the English market system, an integrated organisation can redirect resources to prevention, and closer to home.”

He added: “The financial challenges mean the ability to plan in a completely integrated process will be something the English model will also have to look at.”

North Wales trust chief executive Mary Burrows, who will lead Betsi Cadwalader University local health board and was previously Northampton primary care trust chief executive, said: “I think there is a confidence that the new system, by removing the plethora of organisations, gives us a much better chance of delivering.”

Eight provider trusts and 22 health boards in Wales are being merged to form seven regional bodies.