Plaid Cymru Assembly Member for Arfon Siân Gwenllian has raised fresh concerns about the future of health services in north Wales as Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board discuss further far-reaching reforms to health provisions.
The Plaid Cymru AM discovered the health board will be discussing these changes at their next Board meeting, including consolidating inpatient urology services onto two sites instead of three, removing hyper-acute stroke care from two sites and consolidating elective orthopaedics from five sites to three.
Siân Gwenllian AM has also questioned why no impact assessment was undertaken into the effects of downgrading vascular services at Ysbyty Gwynedd on patients living in north west Wales, who will now be expected to travel over an hour to access emergency treatment.
Siân Gwenllian AM said,
‘We have already witnessed Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board performing a dramatic u-turn on vascular care for people living in north west Wales, reneging on a promise to protect this world-leading service at Ysbyty Gwynedd.’
‘Having failed to satisfy my concerns regarding their commitment to patients living in north west Wales, the health board are now discussing further changes to key services across north Wales including acute stroke care and urology services.’
‘There is however no confirmation which hospital sites will lose these services. What we have seen so far from the health board are far reaching reforms being pushed through the back door with minimal public scrutiny and little or no transparency.’
‘My real worry is that Ysbyty Gwynedd and patients in the north-west corner of Wales will once again bear the brunt of an eastwards drift of healthcare without even being remotely aware that such broad reforms are afoot and vital services are under threat.’
‘I therefore call on the health board and the Cabinet Secretary for Health in the Welsh Labour Government to clarify as a matter of urgency which sites are being considered for downgrading and to assure my constituents that no more services will be lost from Ysbyty Gwynedd.’