A REPORT on the future of healthcare in North Wales is recommending major changes for Colwyn Bay and Llandudno Community Hospitals.
The proposals made by the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board prescribe closing the minor injury unit at Colwyn Bay Hospital, and making Llandudno Hospital into one of ten “hospital hubs” providing a “wider range of outpatient services”.
A decision on the recommendations will be made at a full BCUHB board meeting in November, with a ten week public consultation programme beginning on August 20.
“Minor Injury Services across North Wales will be provided on a hub and spoke model from the hospital hubs, with common opening times and service provision, wherever possible co-located with the out of hours service,” the report says.
The proposed removal of Colwyn Bay’s MIU follows its temporary closure this winter in a bit to boost staffing numbers at other clinical facilities, and is one of seven units at North Wales community hospitals facing the axe.
Clwyd West AM Darren Millar hit out at the decision to axe the MIU, and pledged to put forward residents’ views through public meetings over the coming months.
“Downgrading community hospitals in this way is totally unacceptable,” he said. “Closure will mean poorer access to services for patients and forcing vulnerable people to travel further for their care.”
The service review report, which outlines a number of restructuring measures to help plug a £65m funding gap, also indicates that the hospital will be cast in a supporting role to the ten “hospital hubs” located across the North Wales coast.
X ray services are also due to remain in Colwyn Bay Hospital as one of two “spoke community units”, offering support to the ten hospital hubs. The proposed upgrade for Llandudno Hospital is designed to reduce the number of Conwy patients required to travel to Ysbyty Glan Clwyd.
“We have identified a number of community hospitals and other sites as potential ‘Hospital Hubs’, to be the focal point where we deliver a broader range of services, to a consistent level of quality and safety,” says the report.
“Such changes offer the potential to make a positive difference to the delivery of local services, and allow the provision of more care to more patients in local settings.”