Maternity services under threat as shake-up planned

Reporter:

Claire Gallagher

THE future of maternity services across North Wales hangs in the balance as future options are discussed.

More than 200 people gathered yesterday at Venue Cymru in Llandudno to discuss four main proposals for change to maternity services.

Trystan Pritchard, corporate communications manager for the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, said: “There were 20 tables of representation and they were asked to discuss all options in terms of safety, accessibility to patients and affordability.”

One of the four proposals for maternity services is maintaining all services at all three hospitals – Wrexham Maelor, Ysbyty Gwynedd and Ysbyty Glan Clwyd.

Other plans under discussion are to establish a two-site model at Ysbyty Gwynedd and Ysbyty Glan Clwyd and another plan was a two-site model at Ysbyty Gwynedd and the Maelor.

The final proposal under consideration is a single paediatric unit at Ysbyty Glan Clwyd with day units at Wrexham Maelor and Ysbyty Gwynedd.

Mr Pritchard said: “People had views about making sure services were accessible to local people.

“The view was that people were willing to travel for special services if there were follow up community clinics.”

Mr Pritchard stressed that there would still be maternity services at each hospital but it was the specialist care that was under consideration.

He added: “We will now bring comments from every table together to consider which options to bring to the board in November.”

Meanwhile, concerned parents have started a petition to save children’s services at the Maelor Hospital.

Clare Brown, whose daughter Lauren died of cancer in February, and Ruth Drake, whose child has severe cerebral palsy, have launched a petition in support of the services at Wrexham Maelor.

Ruth said: “The ward is a lifeline. Closing it would be absolutely devastating and would affect so many parents in the area.”

See full story in the Leader

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