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HEIW's Dr Olwen Williams appointed as board member for health and care Welsh language plans

Our Associate Director of Clinical Leadership, Dr Olwen Williams, has been appointed as a member of the More than just words advisory board.

Launched last year, More than just words (Mwn na geiriau in Welsh) is Welsh Government’s strategic plan for improving the provision of Welsh language in health and social care services.

The advisory board will monitor and scrutinise the five-year plan, which exists to improve understanding and recognition among service providers that the use of Welsh language is not just a matter of choice, but also a matter of need for many people in Wales.

The appointment of Olwen and seven other members was announced at the National Eisteddfod by the Minister for Health and Social Services, Eluned Morgan.

A core aim of More than just words is to ensure people who require health and social care services in Welsh receive an ‘active offer’. This is when a service in Welsh is offered or provided without someone having to ask for it.

Delivery of More than just words should help to improve the quality of care and outcomes for services users in Wales.

Dr Olwen Williams said: “I am delighted to have been appointed to the Mwy na geiriau Advisory Board. Enabling our health and social care workforce current and future to embrace the ‘active offer’ is essential.

“Our population ability to express oneself in one’s language of choice is a fundamental right, but also impacts their wellbeing and clinical outcomes. I look forward to being part of this important work.”

Beyond her current role at Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW), Dr Olwen Williams is a consultant physician who has worked in the field of Sexual Health and HIV medicine in north Wales for over thirty years. She is Chair elect of the Academy of Royal Colleges in Wales.

For more information on More than just words, visit More than just words: Welsh language plan in health and social care | GOV.WALES

Published 16 August 2023