19. July 2012 14:55
Two hospitals in North Wales are predicted to close, with imaging and injury treatment facilities being lost from others.
Closure of the Flint and Blaenau Ffestiniog hospitals are among proposals drawn up by Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (BCUHB) to reduce NHS costs.
BCUHB, which predicts a £65m budget deficit, is the first of seven NHS Wales health boards to propose a solution to the health service’s financial crisis.
The two hospitals would be used to provide “enhanced community services”, with inpatient care transferred to nearby hospitals.
In addition, Llangollen Community Hospital would be turned into an extended primary care resource centre.
Minor injury and X-ray units would close at hospitals in Flint, Mold, Colwyn Bay, Ruthin and elsewhere.
Secondary care in North Wales would be refocused on ten community hospital hubs at locations including Bangor, Wrexham and Llandudno.
Neo-natal care for North Wales could be relocated to the Wirral peninsula in the form of a new neo-natal intensive care service at Arrowe Park.
Mick Antoniw, Labour AM for Pontypridd, said it would be better for people to receive higher quality care at a more distant location than to have local services where “quality and outcome is less”.
Six of the NHS Wales health boards are predicting a combined deficit of around £230m by the end of this financial year.