The Hywel Dda University Health Board was forced to cancel the majority of planned operations at its hospitals in Withybush, Prince Philip, Bronglais, and Glangwili last week. Due to ‘extraordinary pressure’ from a significant increase in ill patients, the health board escalated the status of the hospitals to cancel planned operations.
The board stated that: “These actions are in line with our escalation procedures to help manage patient flow and maintain patient safety during periods of peak pressure.” Consequently, all operations were cancelled at all four hospitals from the 6-8 January. On 9 January inpatient operations resumed at Bronglais and Prince Phillip hospitals, but operations at Withybush and Glangwili hospitals still remained postponed.
The Welsh Government to provide extra capacity
The Welsh Government has said it has allocated £30m to health boards to provide extra capacity over the winter period. However, opposition members have heavily criticised the Welsh government’s record within the NHS, with Plaid Cymru and the Welsh Conservatives condemning the management and funding of the NHS under Welsh Labour.
Indeed, other health boards have also been facing a higher demand for services, with Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board stating it was under “extreme pressure” in its emergency departments. Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board also said a small number of routine operations had been postponed at Abergele Hospital. This clearly indicates that health boards are facing increasing pressure to cope with surges in demand over the winter period.
Ally Taft, partner with Medical Accident Group said: “These delays to planned operations are extremely concerning and more needs to be done at the national and board level to mitigate for these increases in patient surges, particularly during the winter months when the NHS is under additional pressure.”
If you or a family member have suffered from a delayed operation, Medical Accident Group is here to help. We have a team of dedicated clinical negligence solicitors who will guide you through the process of making a claim. Call the team now on 0800 050 1668 or email at [email protected].