Welsh A&E Departments Under Pressure

Operations in Welsh hospitals could be cancelled this winter because of pressures on A&E departments.

The head of the NHS in Wales says he expects a rise in demand over the next couple of months.

But Dr Andrew Goodall has said that there are plans in place to make sure health boards can cope with the rise in demand.

He said “We started our planning for this winter, just as last winter finished”

“A lot of action is in place around community services for example and extended staff working with the ambulance service”.

Health Boards, councils and the ambulance service have come up with joint strategies to deal with winter pressures.

Dr Goodall told Heart people can help by “choosing well” and avoiding A&E - unless you need help urgently:

“Our hospitals and ambulance services are really for life-threatening and serious conditions”

“ We want to emphasise that people have other choices like pharmacies, their GPs and minor injury units”

A and E departments in Wales are expected to see more admissions during the cold weather, as the numbers of things like slips and falls go up.

But it’s hoped that by more people having the flu jab, NHS staff can focus on patients who need emergency care.