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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Health Minister visits community hospital

Following today’s (Wednesday) visit by Health Minister Lesley Griffiths to Ruthin Hospital, Llyr Gruffydd, Plaid Cymru’s Assembly Member for the North, said: “I’m glad the Minister has taken the time to hear for herself the concerns that many of have about the planned centralisation and downgrading of our local health services.

* Llyr Hughes Gruffydd AM.
“In the case of Ruthin, the loss of the minor injuries unit and X-ray service will impact quite drastically on the hospital’s ability to provide a full local service, including orthopaedics. The hospital currently serves a wide area of south Denbighshire and, for people in the Corwen area who may also lose Llangollen Hospital, it will mean very long journeys for relatively minor health care.
“What the health board has failed to recognise in proposing these changes is the very real problem of transport in rural areas. Many people struggle to run a car with prices at the pump rising almost daily at times. Added to that very real ‘transport poverty’, there is little alternative. Public transport in this area is patchy at best and certainly not geared to provide a service to and from hospitals. In some cases we’re talking of an hour’s drive to the nearest hospital so it’s not a case of people hopping into the car and driving an extra few miles.
“The Health Minister is still awaiting the final decision by Betsi Cadwaladr’s board in January, which will then come to her for approval. That is then her opportunity to reject the proposals where they advocate moving health services beyond the reach of the local population.”

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