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Friday, February 15, 2013

Closure date given for Llan injuries unit

* Now with Keep Lllangollen Health Services comment at foot of story

The minor injuries service is due to transfer from Llangollen Community Hospital to the Health Centre during the week commencing the 3rd of March.

That piece of important information for local people is buried in the last paragraph of a press release issued yesterday (Thursday)  by the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board.
The release, which llanblogger has picked up from the board’s website, is mostly about new opening hours for the minor injuries service across the region.
It says: “For some hospitals opening hours will be extended further once staffing arrangements have been completed.
“The Minor Injuries Service is one of the care options available to people who become ill or suffer an injury: as its name implies it is intended for people who suffer a physical injury such as a cut, insect bite or sprain. 

“Other care options include: 

·         For minor illnesses and injuries that don’t need to be seen by a nurse or doctor you can use over-the counter medicines and dressings. If you need healthcare advice you can visit a local pharmacy or contact NHS Direct on 08 45 46 47.

·         For more serious illness or persistent pain you should contact your GP for advice and treatment. Outside office hours the GP out of hours service can be called via your normal GP surgery number or by ringing NHS Direct 08 45 46 47.

·         If someone is badly injured or very ill then they should be taken to an Accident & Emergency Department or, for genuine emergency cases, call 999 for the ambulance service to arrange an appropriate response.” 

The release goes on to list the places where Minor Injuries Services are available. 

These include Denbigh Infirmary (8:00am to 6:00pm, Monday to Friday), Mold Community Hospital (8:30am to 6:00pm) and Wrexham Maelor Hospital (24 hour minor injuries and A&E service). 

The last paragraph says: “In Llangollen the minor injuries service will transfer from the Community Hospital to the Health Centre during the week commencing the 3rd of March.” 

+ Meanwhile, a llanblogger reader has sent in a picture he took of a notice which says that the minor injuries unit at Chirk Hospital will close next Monday (February 18).
Mike Edwards, chair of Keep Llangollen Special, which recently raised the issue of Llangollen Hospital and local services with wales' Health Minister Lesley Griffiths, said of the latest development: "My main concern would be that as far as I am aware there have been no official notifications to advise patients what is actually happening and when.

"The Community Health Council seems to have not acted decisively to object to BCUHB's confirmed proposals and asked the Health Minister to call them in and examine them in the public interest.

"In the absence of this the Health Board are clearly pushing ahead with their reorganisation and it will be shortly be impossible for anyone to undo them, be it the Minister or anyone else."

A spokesman for the group Keep Llangollen Health Services said: “The Health Board seem to be treating Llangollen and the service users in the community with complete contempt.

"I sincerely hope that the Health Board have put in place the necessary arrangements in order for the Health Centre to be able accommodate the new patients that they’ll be receiving.

"The Health Board need to ensure that the people of Llangollen and the surrounding area are fully aware of the change – the last thing we want is to see a patient suffering and not knowing where to turn to because the hospital is closed and the information hasn’t been properly circulated.

"It’s great that Llanblogger is trying to ensure that people are aware of these changes in advance.

"The Health Board cannot ignore public opinion, and that’s why the Community Health Council must intervene and insist that the final decision is taken by the Health Minister, it’s on her door step after all.

"The fight to keep our Health Services in this valley continues because this Valley, it’s people and it’s visitors deserve a proper community based health service.” 

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