Fear for hospitals over services axe
A WARNING has gone out to health chiefs about how Swansea hospitals will cope if vital services are axed elsewhere.
Dozens of extra beds have been made available to cope with an influx of emergency patients in Swansea and across the wider Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board area.
Now regional AM Suzy Davies has warned that the situation would become even worse if the Princess of Wales Hospital in Bridgend lost its A&E department.
This is one of the scenarios in the South Wales Programme, which is looking at the reconfiguration of regional services with the aim of providing the best possible care within the resources available.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
Although no firm proposals have yet been published, these could emerge as soon as Monday, March 25, when the various health boards involved have pencilled in special meetings.
Conservative AM for South Wales West Mrs Davies took part in a protest march against the prospect of losing services from the Princess of Wales, which could also include its consultant-led maternity service.
"To hear that once again hospitals across the region are experiencing high levels of demand from seriously ill patients is very worrying," said Mrs Davies.
"We have now seen the cancellation of non-urgent operations yet again. This is the second time this year these hospitals have been under intense pressure and it's only March.
"They opened extra beds, especially in intensive care at Morriston. But it begs the questions of how on earth they would cope if A&E services were lost at Princess of Wales. Morriston A&E is struggling to cope now despite a £6 million revamp, so how will it cope if PoW has only a minor injuries unit? It's very worrying."
Mrs Davies said hospital managers had talked for years about needing fewer beds as more patients were dealt with as day cases or treated outside hospital.
"But this latest incident proves there will always be a demand for hospital beds to treat people who are simply too ill to be at home.
"Yet ABMU is actively considering closing down 30 beds at Gellinudd Hospital (near Pontardawe) and moving a further 20 beds into Neath Port Talbot Hospital from Cimla," said Mrs Davies.
"There is also a question mark over the future of other community hospitals,'' she went on.
"Morriston is already struggling because of the downgrading of Neath Port Talbot Hospital and of Prince Phillip Hospital in Llanelli.
"It is being squeezed from both sides."
ABMU will hold a special meeting on Monday, March 25, to finalise its annual plan.
Chief executive Paul Roberts said: "It may be there is a need to hold a special board at this time to consider issues related to the South Wales Programme.
"March 25 has been suggested as a possible date for board meetings across South Wales," he added.