Calls for Immediate Action to Reduce Pressure on Glan Clwyd
Janet Finch-Saunders, MS for Aberconwy, has called for urgent action by Eluned Morgan MS, Minister for Health and Social Services, in response to the latest damning report into Ysbyty Glan Clwyd’s emergency department.
The Healthcare Inspectorate Wales (HIW) report published yesterday, identified “risks to patients” and “significant concerns” at the hospital in Rhyl and followed an inspection in May which identified that Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board did not have “adequate arrangements to support the delivery of safe healthcare in the department”.
The inspection in May was undertaken to follow up significant concerns identified during a previous quality check undertaken in March 2022.
As a result, HIW designated the emergency department in Ysbyty Glan Clwyd as a Service Requiring Significant Improvement (SRSI) on 9 May 2022.
The May inspection also identified several additional areas of concern relating to patient safety around the effectiveness of arrangements for assessing, monitoring, observing, and escalating unwell or deteriorating patients.
Ms Finch-Saunders said: “This report is further distressing news for my constituents who rely on Glan Clwyd.
“I honestly believe that many will now actively decide to travel to Bangor for care should an emergency arise.
“Importantly, the report has acknowledged that the emergency department was a very stressful environment for some staff, who were working above and beyond in challenging conditions.
“Their efforts to care for the people of North Wales is valued, and I am determined that the Welsh Government should take action to improve the hospital not just for patients but for the staff who are trying their best is extraordinary circumstances.
“There are many points that stand out to me, including what I believe to be failure of leadership.
“As HIC have stated, there had been little progress on the areas of improvement noted during the previous Quality Check despite the health board providing an action plan and assurances that matters had improved.
“So it seems that we have a situation in which the health board is giving assurances that there are improvements when in reality there are not.
“Clearly, the current model is not working, nor are the Welsh Government targeted interventions.”
Ms Finch-Saunders continued: “Alongside full adherence to the recommendations of the HIC report, we need to see the Eluned Morgan MS, Minister for Health and Social Services, take the lead on running a campaign to fill the over 600 nursing and midwifery vacancies in Betsi Cadwaladr.
“To protect patient care the Welsh Government must introduce a national nursing retention strategy and prioritise safe and effective care for patients.
“Also, as the Minister knows very well by now, I believe that an immediate step should be taken to reduce the pressure on the three major emergency department in North Wales, especially Glan Clwyd. This can be achieved by giving Minor Injury Units (MIU) like Llandudno a greater role to play.
“It is absolutely ridiculous that there are residents of Aberconwy going to Llandudno Hospital for help, but then being sent onwards to A&E at Glan Clwyd or Gwynedd.
“By increasing the service the MIU can provide in Llandudno, there would be less of a need to transfer patients to the major emergency departments”.
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