RESIDENTS in Carmarthen and the surrounding area are being invited to a public drop-in event to discuss our proposals to fundamentally change the way we provide healthcare services for current and future generations.

The event will be held between 2pm-7pm at St Peter’s Civic Hall, Carmarthen SA31 1PG on Tuesday 8 May 2018.

This is your opportunity to tell us what you think about our proposals or to give us new ideas.

Hywel Dda University Health Board has formally launched its “Big NHS Change,” a 12-week consultation aimed at making provision of local health and care better for our communities.

We’re asking residents across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire, as well as the wider cross-border regions, to get involved and have your say on three proposals to improve the way we provide care for our population.

Each proposal has been designed and tested by our clinicians to ensure that our services are safe, sustainable, accessible and kind for our generation and those to come.

Hywel Dda Chief Executive Steve Moore said: “Our proposals for change could affect everyone in our area, from bumps and babies to older people and everyone in between, so we are asking you all to tell us what you think. Whether you are a patient, a carer, a family member, or one of the thousands of people who work for the Health Board – we want to hear from you.

“Last year we started a conversation with our population, our staff and with people we work with to provide care to explore what is important to us and to jointly think about how to best run services. We did this because we think it is the right thing to do to design our services together. We explored the opportunities we think are offered to us through modern medicine and advancements in technology and the expectations you have for us to improve.

“We also set out the significant challenges faced by the NHS which we must deal with to ensure it thrives and delivers for you and your family now and in the future. This means that we will have to make decisions about where we can provide services and know that there are going to be compromises to make, so that we make best use of our resources.”

Among the biggest challenges the health board currently faces are an ageing population, difficulty for many people in accessing services close to home, significant recruitment challenges – particularly specialist medical staff – and ageing hospital buildings which require a lot of maintenance to keep running.

To overcome these we want to radically change the way we provide local health care services so that people are accessing most of the care and treatment they need in their local community, and are able to stay at home while they are getting treatment rather than having to go into hospital.

Reducing the number of main hospitals will mean having fewer medical rotas to fill, making it easier to attract clinicians to come and work for us; it will also mean shorter waiting times and fewer cancellations, and more money for local and community health services.

In all three of the proposals, Bronglais District General Hospital will continue to provide services for mid Wales; a new major hospital will be built somewhere between Narberth and St Clears, and there will be 10 community hubs across the Health Board area.

The proposals are:

Proposal A

• A new urgent care and planned care hospital between Narberth and St Clears

• Community hospitals in Glangwili, Prince Philip Hospital in Llanelli and Withybush

• A general hospital in Aberystwyth on the Bronglais Hospital site

Proposal B

• A new urgent care and planned care hospital between Narberth and St Clears

• Community hospitals in Glangwili and Withybush

• General hospitals at Prince Philip Hospital in Llanelli and Aberystwyth on the Bronglais Hospital site

Proposal C

• A new urgent care hospital between Narberth and St Clears

• A planned care hospital on Glangwili site

• A community hospital in Withybush

• General hospitals at Prince Philip Hospital in Llanelli and Aberystwyth on the Bronglais Hospital site

Hywel Dda’s Executive Medical Director & Director of Clinical Strategy, Dr Phil Kloer, added: “The challenges we face are really significant. People are living longer, some with long lasting health conditions, and we expect there to be many more older people who will need regular health care and social care.

“In our area some people live in towns and some in country areas, making it difficult for us to ensure that services are in the right place for people to access. Many people live a long way from services, so helping people to live at home while they have treatment can involve a lot of travel for health workers.

“We know that people want to be supported to manage their health in their own homes – about 4 out of every 10 hospital beds are filled by people who could be treated at home. Added to this is the fact that we’re finding it hard to get enough permanent staff, especially specialist medical staff, to come and work for us, and we also need to make fuller use of new technology such as computers, phones, telehealth and telecare.

“This is why we have come up with three proposals that we think are safe, viable and offer an improvement on what we currently have, and have launched a formal 12-week consultation to present these to you, to listen and talk to you further and take on board your views and ideas.

“We all have a shared passion for the NHS, our services, our history and our staff and we want to harness this to design, together with you, the best health service for our population. We are so grateful to those of you who have already been involved in this as patients, staff and members of our communities.”

Your feedback will be independently analysed and considered before any formal proposal is put before our Health Board for decision on how to proceed later in 2018 and we will continue to keep you updated on how we have used your feedback.

Please tell us your views by:

Completing the online questionnaire at: www.hywelddahb.wales.nhs.uk/hddchange

Emailing us at: hyweldda.engagement@wales.nhs.uk

Telephone: 01554 899 056

Coming to one of our drop-in events:

Tuesday 8th May 2pm – 7pm / St Peter’s Civic Hall, Carmarthen SA31 1PG

Friday 11th May 2pm – 7pm / Regency Hall, Saundersfoot SA69 9NG

Tuesday 15th May 2pm – 7pm / Letterston Memorial Hall, Letterston SA62 5RY

Friday 18th May 2pm – 7pm / Morlan Centre, Aberystwyth SY23 2HH

Tuesday 22nd May 2pm – 7pm / Selwyn Samuel Centre, Llanelli SA15 3AE

Thursday 24th May 2pm – 7pm / Llandybie Memorial Hall, Llandybie SA18 3UR

Further events may also be organised.

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