Concerns raised over ambulance waiting times
Concerns have been raised by MSs over ambulance waiting times following the news that an “extraordinary incident” has been declared at hospitals across Wales.
Ambulance delays were experienced across multiple sites across the country over the weekend, specifically within the Swansea Health Board area.
Delays in handing over patients to hospitals prompted the decision from the the Welsh Ambulance Service to declare an extraordinary incident.
In one case, an ambulance was forced to wait an agonising 28 hours outside of Morriston Hospital.
It was reported that a total of 16 ambulances queuing up outside the hospital’s A&E department at one time.
In a post published to X, formally known as Twitter, Welsh Ambulance said: “We have declared an extraordinary incident due to handover delays at hospital sites across Wales, specifically across the Swansea Bay area.
“You can help us by only calling 999 if your emergency is life or limb-threatening. Please call 111 to receive non-urgent medical advice.”
Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader, Jane Dodds MS said: “It is incredibly concerning that the Welsh Ambulance Service has faced such significant challenges over the weekend due to delays experienced in A&E departments across Wales.
“Month after month we hear about the challenges our ambulance services face and the significant delays at the door of A&E departments across the country. It is just one part of the picture of a struggling NHS.
“The Welsh Labour Government are failing to get any real grip on emergency care and this development is just one in a long list of blunders.”
Welsh Conservative Shadow Health Minister, Russell George MS said the incident was an “a symptom of wider Labour failure” to run the Welsh NHS properly.
He said: “Despite recent announcements around funding, the health budget has still been cut in real terms this year, placing us in a uniquely disadvantaged position compared with the other nations of the UK which explains our longer waits inside and outside hospitals.
“Our view is clear, Labour have the wrong priorities – if they weren’t distracted with spending vital funds on more politicians and blanket 20mph speed limits, they would be in a better position to fix our Welsh NHS.
“Welsh Conservatives would look at the problem as a whole. While there needs to be massive change in social care, to tackle the problem during the imminent winter pressures we would establish care hotels and encourage former NHS staff to become reservists to stop ambulances queuing outside of hospitals.”
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