Ed Miliband says Ann Clwyd's NHS concerns are 'valid'

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Media captionLabour leader Ed Miliband says Ann Clwyd's concerns about the NHS should be taken seriously

Labour leader Ed Miliband says he has told veteran Labour MP Ann Clwyd that her concerns about the NHS should be taken seriously.

The Cynon Valley MP has criticised the Welsh NHS since the death of her husband at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff in 2012.

First Minister Carwyn Jones criticised the MP in the Senedd, saying she had failed to provide evidence.

Mr Miliband said: "I think Ann has an important and valid point of view".

Speaking to BBC Sunday Politics Wales, Mr Miliband said he had spoken to Ms Clwyd on a number of occasions.

He said: "She had a particular personal experience but it goes wider than that. Her issue is about care for older people.

"I think it's something we should take very very seriously and [she has] wider issues about mortality rates, and of course there's a review going on into that."

When asked if Mr Jones was right to make his criticism of her, Mr Miliband said: "I'm not going to get into that debate. I understand there are differences of opinion over certain issues.

"I know though from my conversations with Carwyn that he takes very seriously the issues that Ann raises.

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Image caption Opposition AMs say Labour is in denial about Ann Clwyd's criticisms of the Welsh NHS

"He [Carwyn Jones] knows the importance of having an NHS which is working for the people of Wales.

"So Ann's concerns are taken seriously both by Mark Drakeford, the health minister, and Carwyn Jones."

Ms Clwyd says she has received hundreds of letters from patients expressing concern over their experiences in Welsh hospitals.

Earlier this week opposition parties expressed concern after she was prevented from giving evidence to the assembly about the NHS.

A proposal was put forward to invite the Labour MP to give details to the health committee about the correspondence she had received from patients but the idea was voted down by Labour AMs.

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