Have your say on NHS shake-up plans for our region

Reporter:

Lois Hough

BOSSES behind a controversial shake-up of health services in North Wales have made a fresh call for people to have their say.

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (BCUHB) is under pressure to make savings of £64.6 million in the financial year.

Under the reshuffle, Flint Community Hospital looks set to be axed and replaced with a Primary Care Resource Centre, while Mold Community Hospital could lose its Minor Injuries Unit (MIU) and X-ray service.

Llangollen Community Hospital is also facing the axe, as is the MIU at Chirk Community Hospital.

The Special Care Baby Unit at Wrexham Maelor will be saved, but long-term neonatal intensive care could be moved to Arrowe Park Hospital, Wirral.

Health chiefs are proposing to create ‘hospital hubs’ at Holywell Community Hospital, Deeside Community Hospital and Wrexham Maelor, where extended hospital services, such as MIU and X-ray, will be provided.

A public consultation ends on October 28 and the health board is keen for as many people as possible to share their views.

Executive director of planning, Neil Bradshaw, said: “We have already had many people coming forward to offer their views, take part in debates and suggest alternative approaches.

“We have been pleased with the lively and robust debate we have had so far.

“As the consultation period draws to a close, we want to take this opportunity to encourage as many people as possible to share their views and opinions with us before the health board makes any decisions.”

Chief executive Mary Burrows added: “The health board is clear that we cannot afford to stand still.

“The status quo is not an option. The proposals we are now making are intended to change the way in which services are provided and where they are provided to meet quality standards.

“Our aim is to improve health, not just extend life. We believe that services should be close to where people live whenever it is safe and appropriate.

“When more specialist care is needed, hospitals must be centres of excellence so the best possible care is available when needed from the right people.

“The proposals will allow us to attract and retain the professional clinical staff we need and control our costs when public finances are decreasing.”

Join the debate at www.bcuhbjointhedebate.wales.nhs.uk, by calling 0800 678 5297 or by writing to BCUHB Join the Debate, Freepost RSZZ-SGXY-TSEZ, LL17 0JA.

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